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Places and forms of power : In what way does sport have the power to unite people?

Discours : Places and forms of power : In what way does sport have the power to unite people?. Recherche parmi 298 000+ dissertations

Par   •  13 Mai 2018  •  Discours  •  556 Mots (3 Pages)  •  1 323 Vues

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Hello, Today I will be presenting the notion of Forms and Places of Power. First of all, I would like to define the notion. Power is the ability to control others, events, or resources; the ability to make things happen despite obstacles, resistance, or opposition. Different Forms of power can be : Soft power = the power to encourage others to do what you want them to do without forcing them to do so → Culture or political values. Hard power (as the name would suggest) is a more aggressive form of power→ the use of military or economic means to influence the behavior of others.

Places of power could be important buildings or institutions that represent a certain form of power for example the White House – a symbol of the American presidency.

To discuss the notion of Places and Forms of Power, I'm going to present the power of sport. The question we are going to ask ourselves is → In what way does sport have the power to unite people?

In an often-divided world, sport is a unique and important way to bind people together, both across and within societies people who otherwise have little in common come together in packed stadiums, as fans and as players, and put there differences aside for the sake of their teams and the sport they love . The Olympics are a great example of unifying people from all over the world on and off the field. In the opening ceremony of the 23rd Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, we saw again the power of sport, when athletes from North and South Korea marched together. “the most dramatic gesture of reconciliation between them in a decade”. Over time, world leaders have continued to leverage sports as a means to reopen diplomatic dialogue or restore public division. Perhaps the most well known example of this is China’s “Ping-Pong diplomacy”, whereby the Chinese government invited US players to exhibition matches in their country in April 1971. This marked the first time Americans were allowed to enter the country since 1949. Less than a year later, President Nixon made a historic trip to China, which ended 25 years without communication or diplomatic relations between the two countries, and led to the re-establishment of diplomatic ties in 1979.

Nelson Mandela similarly recognized the unique power of sport to heal and bring together a deeply divided South Africa. At a time of great tension over his appointment as the country’s first black president, Mandela appeared on the field after the Springboks won the 1995 Rugby World Cup, wearing the team’s traditional green jersey and cap. The Johannesburg stadium was filled largely with white South Africans, who were initially stunned but soon starting chanting “Nelson! Nelson!” in a moment that will be remembered for ever as the ultimate example of sport’s power to heal division.

Mandela said in 2000: “Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. It has the power to unite people in a way that little else does. It speaks to youth in a language they understand. Sport can create hope where there was only despair.”

In conclusion we can say that the inclusive aspect of sport is where one can really see the true power that sport can have in unifying the world.


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