(Dis)located Olympic Patriots: Sporting Connections, Administrative Communications and Imperial Ether in Interwar New Zealand

Kohe, Geoff (2014) (Dis)located Olympic Patriots: Sporting Connections, Administrative Communications and Imperial Ether in Interwar New Zealand.

View this record at http://eprints.worc.ac.uk/4246/
Official URL: 10.1080/17430437.2014.990686


During the interwar period (1919–1939), protagonists of the early New Zealand Olympic Committee (NZOC) worked to renegotiate and improve the country's international sporting participation and involvement in the International Olympic Committee. To this end, NZOC effectively used its locally based administrators and well-placed expatriates in Britain to variously assert the organization's nascent autonomy, independence and political power, progress Antipodean athlete's causes and counter any potential doubt about the nation's peripheral position in imperial sporting dialogues. Adding to the corpus of scholarship on New Zealand's ties and tribulations with imperial Britain, both in and beyond sport (e.g. Beilharz and Cox, 2007, “Settler Capitalism Revisited,” Thesis Eleven 88: 112–124; Belich, 2001, Paradise Reforged: A History of the New Zealanders from the 1880s to the Year 2000, Auckland: Allen Lane; Belich, 2007, Making Peoples: A History of the New Zealanders from Polynesian Settlement to the End of the Nineteenth Century, Auckland: The Penguin Group; Coombes, 2006, Rethinking Settler Colonialism: History and Memory in Australia, Canada, Aotearoa New Zealand and South Africa, Manchester: Manchester University Press; MacLean, 2010, “New Zealand (Aotearoa),” In Routledge Companion to Sports History, edited by Steve W. Pope and John Nauright, 510–525, London: Routledge; Phillips, 1984, “Rugby, War and the Mythology of the New Zealand Male,” The New Zealand Journal of History 18 (1): 83–103; Phillips, 1987, A Man's Country: The Image of the Pakeha Male, Auckland: Penguin Books; Ryan, 2004, The Making of New Zealand Cricket, 1832–1914, London: Frank Cass; Ryan, 2005, Tackling Rugby Myths: Rugby and New Zealand Society 1854–2004, Dunedin: University of Otago Press; Ryan, 2007, “Sport in 19th-Century Aotearoa/New Zealand: Opportunities and Constraints,” In Sport in Aotearoa/New Zealand Society, edited by Chris Collins and Steve Jackson, 96–111, Auckland: Thomson), I will examine how the political actions and strategic location of three key NZOC agents (specifically, administrator Harry Amos and expatriates Arthur Porritt and Jack Lovelock) worked in their own particular ways to assert the position of the organization within the global Olympic fraternity. I argue that the efforts of Amos, Porritt and Lovelock also concomitantly served to remind Commonwealth sporting colleagues (namely Britain and Australia) that New Zealand could not be characterized as, or relegated to being, a distal, subdued or subservient colonial sporting partner. Subsequently, I contend that NZOC's development during the interwar period, and particularly the utility of expatriate agents, can be contextualized against historiographical shifts that encourage us to rethink, reimagine and rework narratives of empire, colonization, national identity, commonwealth and belonging.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: H Social Sciences (General), JA Political science (General)
Members: University of Worcester
Depositing User: ULCC Admin
Date Deposited: 08 Nov 2016 13:16
Last Modified: 08 Nov 2016 13:16
URI: http://collections.crest.ac.uk/id/eprint/13708

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