Mega-events and social change

Spectacle, legacy and public culture

By Maurice Roche

Mega-events and social change


  • Hardcover
  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-3387-8
  • Pages: 344
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £31.00
  • Published Date: January 2019
  • BIC Category: Olympic & Paralympic games, SPORTS & RECREATION / Sociology of Sports, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / Urban, SPORTS & RECREATION / Olympics, Society & social sciences / Society & culture: general, Sporting events & management, Sociology: Sport & Leisure, Sociology: sport & leisure, Sociology
  • Series: Globalizing Sport Studies


The spectacle of major cultural and sporting events can preoccupy modern societies. This book is concerned with contemporary mega-events, like the Olympics and Expos. Using a sociological perspective Roche argues that mega-events reflect the major social changes which now influence our societies, particularly in the West, and that these amount to a new 'second phase' of the modernization process. Changes are particularly visible in the media, urban and global locational aspects of mega-events. Thus he suggests that contemporary mega-events, both in their achievements and their vulnerabilities, reflect, in the media sphere, the rise of the internet; in the urban sphere, de-industrialisation and the growing ecological crisis; and in the global sphere, the relative decline of the West and the rise of China and other 'emerging' countries.


1 Mega-events and macro-social change
PART I: Mega-events and media change
2 Mega-events and mediatisation: between 'old' and 'new' media
3 The 'Digital Age', media-sport and mega-events: 'piracy' and symbiosis in the cultural industries
PART II: Mega-events, legacy and urban change
4 Embedding mega-events: staging spectacles in changing cities
5 Mega-events and urban development: Olympics and 'legacies'
6 Mega-events, urban space and social change: expos, parks and cities
PART III: Mega-events and global change in East and West
7 Mega-events, globalisation and urban legacy: events in China in the early twenty-first century
8 Mega-events, glocalisation and urban legacy: London as an 'event city' and the 2012 Olympics


Maurice Roche is Emeritus Professor of Sociology at the University of Sheffield

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