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 MA Conference: Homerun for "Global Games, Global Goals" 

20122Apr
Submitted by Christina Harms on Mon, 04/02/2012 - 15:27

On March 30 and 31, 2012, the annual American Studies Leipzig European MA-level graduate conference welcomed eight young scholars from the US, Poland, Denmark, Great Britain, and Germany to present their research at ASL. This year’s conference with the topic "Global Games, Global Goals: Locating America in the Cultural, Social, and Political Realms of Sport“ investigated different notions and conceptions of sports from a humanities perspective and shed light on the ways sports influences cultural currents in contemporary society. The presenters were MA and PhD students who are currently enrolled in seven different universities all over Europe. Their presentations showed not only a great variety of approaches to sports but also varified that valuable and significant research is done by European graduate students. Furthermore, "Global Games, Global Goals“ demonstrated once again that the concept of the ASL MA level conference is highly appreciated by the participants as an opportunity to present scholarly work among peers and to gain international conference experience. Many of the presenters stressed that they particularly enjoyed the relaxed and open atmosphere among the participants, as well as the professional organization of the event.

 

In five panels, the presentations covered various sports-connected topics such as the Americanization of Danish handball, identity construction through sports, sports as a literary trope, notions of the athlete’s body, and psychological dimensions of sport careers. As a novelty, "Global Games, Global Goals“ also integrated voices from the professional world: US Consul General Mark J. Powell, Renate Urne, former player on the national women’s handball team of Norway, and marketing expert Felix Kurtze gave insights into the ways sports affected their lives and careers. The keynote address "American and German Sports from a Socio-Cultural Perspective" was delivered by Prof. Dr. Dorothee Alfermann from the Institute for Sport Psychology and Pedagogy at the University of Leipzig.

 

Organizers, presenters, and ASL faculty members before the conference opening
Organizers, presenters, and ASL faculty members chatting before the conference opening
The conference opening session
Prof. Crister Garrett during his welcoming words
ASL faculty, presenters, and guests
US Consul General Mark J. Powell talked about diversity, sports, and diplomacy
Prof. Dr. Alfermann with Amalie Elmgren and Peter Schneider
Prof. Dr. Dorothee Alfermann during the keynote address
Presenter Amalie Elmgren from Denmark
Presenter Elina Penner from Berlin
Presenter Joanna Kucharska from Poland
Marianne Polkau and Felix Kurtze at the GACC CA Professional Roundtable
Presenter Maria Wojdylo from Poland
Presenter Wojciech Cichon from Poland
Neil Huitson and Rebecca Schäfer
Presenter Neil Huitson from Great Britain
Day 2
Presenter Rebecca Schäfer from Mainz
Presenter Peter Schneider and organizer Marianne Polkau
Conference organizers sharing a lighter moment during the concluding session
group picture
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