Mountaineering and social change. Elements for an investigation program in sport sociology.

Manuel González Fernández

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Cite this article

González Hernández, M. (2004). Mountaineering and social change. Elements for an investigation program in sport sociology. Apunts. Educación Física y Deportes, 77, 12-17.

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Abstract

Mountain activities (mountaineering, scaling and climbing) represent an unusual case in the panorama of sports specialities. Not only for their widely competitive character or for their “field of play” being so far away, but also, especially, because they exceed the strict framework of sports practice, both in the traditional popularizing of basic activities and also in the bold connotations –therefore barely regulated– of the extreme achievements. The appearance of mountaineering –its approximate inclusion in the canons of the recent understanding of sport– is a phenomenon whose origin can be situated in a parallel way to the opening of the modern world. Overall, it is a strange product of the society in which we live, because its mentioned peculiarities makes it both a refuge for the socially decadent and marginal groups, and also a foretaste of emerging actors. To see the economy an modern society from a mountain top, as the social history of mountaineering shows, offers us a new, thought provoking special perspective of the object of the sociological profession.

Keywords: Mountaineering, Social Change, Sport sociology.

ISSN: 2014-0983

Published: July 01, 2004