Fitness & Health, Sport & Exercise Science
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That joke isn’t funny any more

An article published in Sociology of Sport Journal investigates the presence and effects of racial micro-aggressions in English first-class cricket.

Drawing on interview data with British Asian players, it not only highlights players’ experiences of racism, but also identifies their tendency to downplay the repercussions of some of the forms that this prejudice takes.

The analysis demonstrates that colour-blind ideology is so entrenched in contemporary Western sport that its reproduction is not exclusively the preserve of white groups, it can also at times compel minority ethnic participants to endorse dominant claims that the effects of racism are overstated as well.

As a consequence they are often pressured into denying or downplaying those forms of verbal discrimination which are articulated between team-mates and in a seemingly playful manner, dismissing incidents as merely “banter” or “jokes”.

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