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Commentary on "The Sporting Spirit" - George Orwell

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004453-035 Discursive Questions - Essays 004453-035 Discursive Questions - Essays George Orwell Mohamed Ahmed Ramy 11/30/2013 ________________ * What human issues form the subjects of the work? Did you find any of them particularly well handled? The Sporting Spirit encapsulates instincts, pride, appearances, nationalism, symbolism, social identity, and human penchants as core issues that foment the gravity of the essay; ?savage? instincts coagulate with nationalism and appearances to foster one?s pride, symbolizing the proudness of being labelled by one?s country ? American, British, Russian, or otherwise. Pride fosters greed, which disinters the need for war ? either literally or figuratively. Orwell conveys symbolic war in his essay, The Sporting Spirit, depicting sports as a means of a battle between spectators, between two nations. It is a game where you either lose or win; there is no alternative. ...read more.


Orwell touches on human issues of stratification in the first two paragraphs. He divulges what many ?thinking? people have kept clandestine for so long ? that sport breeds ill-will. Sport aggression is a common phenomenon nowadays; Orwell classifies teams as ?Dynamo,? ?Russian,? or ?British,? causing the reader to deliberate the labels spectators use in order to identify with their team. The diction of Orwell ? ?? I am told by someone,? and ?? someone else informs me? ? signify how his opinion is not confined to him alone, but rather that others share it as well. Social identification is one of the key human issues conveyed in the essay. Orwell says that sports create fresh animosity on both sides. The diction of ?animosity? portrays the hate of spectators to one another as fervent dislike bred from the virtues and differences of one another. ...read more.


At best, it betrays it. At worst, it corrupts it. It is not just the players who are corrupted; it is also the spectators. The imagery of a battlefield illustrate Orwell?s view of sport as a savage, violent activity where running, jumping, and kicking a ball are tests of national virtue. Good sportsmanship ? honesty, humility, imperturbableness, respect, and appreciation ? is non-existent to Orwell. Orwell?s insincere pathos delineates how sports are wrongfully understood by many. Orwell also touches, in my opinion, on chauvinism rather than patriotism. In sports, if a team loses, it is for a reason. Ignoring the reasons for loss, and recklessly blaming the referee or the conditions is a form of ignorance that is only shown by a chauvinist ? a person who believes that his country is the sole best county, obdurately. Orwell is able to craft the essay with one human issue as a core: sport glorifies differences, it demonises opponents, and erodes the moral character of its followers. ...read more.

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