Culture In Sports Culture

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“Without understanding a culture’s sports, we cannot understand the culture itself” (Gorn and Oriard, 1995). The defining parts of a culture can also shape a country’s history. A large part of the Greek identity is being the nation that began the Olympics hundreds of years ago. As America began to mature, sports helped to shape its identity as well. One piece of America’s identity is that it was and is home to millions of immigrants from all over the world. The music to one of the most recognized sports songs in America, ‘Take Me Out to the Ballgame”, was composed by Albert Von Tilzer, a first generation Jewish immigrant (Patterson, 2008). Individuals and groups have contributed to making America’s history of sports what it is today. African Americans and women are two of the most discussed groups when it comes to United States sports history. Jackie Robinson is credited with being the first African American to play in the major leagues and “may well have been the most influential black American of the past 50 years,” (Gorn and Oriard, 1995). His work allowed the 1971 Pittsburgh Pirates to field the first all African American and Latino line-up twenty-four years later. To this day, he is honored throughout baseball on April 15th every year. His number, 42, is retired throughout the majors, and is only ever worn on Jackie Robinson Day. Decades after his death, Jackie Robinson is still remembered for the barriers he broke for African Americans in the Negro Leagues, as well
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