Marxism, Colonialism, and Cricket: C. L. R. James's Beyond a Boundary at Fifty

Featherstone, D., Gair, C. , Hogsbjerg, C. and Smith, A. (Eds.) (2018) Marxism, Colonialism, and Cricket: C. L. R. James's Beyond a Boundary at Fifty. Series: The C. L. R. James archives. Duke University Press: Durham, NC. ISBN 9781478001126

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Beyond a Boundary is that rarest of things: a serious book about popular culture, a book that reckons with the ways in which sporting practices can express political meanings and can act as the ‘muster points’ of political struggle, whilst also being shaped in themselves by the passions and divisions of the historical contexts in which people play and watch sport. Rarer still, perhaps, it is a serious book which has become profoundly popular, taken up not just by scholars or by the cricket cognoscenti, but by audiences across the world. The enduring popularity of James’ book is, in that respect, both a testament to the lucidity of his writing, and a vindication of his lifelong defence of the capacity for astute critical awareness on the part of ordinary readers. This volume brings together a collection of new essays and reflections on Beyond a Boundary by writers from the UK, America and the Caribbean. In the wake of the 50th anniversary of the publication of the text, it provides the first collection of critical studies dedicated to James’ masterpiece. These essays acknowledge and celebrate James’ achievement but they also recognize the truth of Stuart Hall’s injunction that to honour James means taking his ideas ‘seriously and debating them, extending them, quarrelling with them and making them live again’ (1992: 3). In that respect they include critical questioning – amongst other things – of: James’ treatment of gender, of his historical analysis of cricketing development, of the representative qualities which he ascribed to leading players of the game, and of the effects of James’ own background on his ideas and presumptions. We hope, in this respect, that they open up new ways of engaging with and making use of Beyond a Boundary for the future.

Item Type:Edited Books
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Gair, Dr Chris and Smith, Professor Andrew and Featherstone, Professor David
Subjects:H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Critical Studies > English Literature
College of Science and Engineering > School of Geographical and Earth Sciences
College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Publisher:Duke University Press

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