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Global sport and consumer culture.

This paper introduces the Special Issue of the Journal of Consumer Culture on the theme of ‘Global Sport and Consumer Culture’. We begin by briefly setting out how the interrelations of global sport and consumer culture have intensified through three historical stages: first, a ‘take-off’ phase from the late 19th century to the mid-1940s; second, an ‘integrative and expansionist’ phase from the late 1940s to the late 1980s; third, a ‘transnational hyper-commodification’ phase from the early 1990s onwards. We argue that contemporary global consumer sport is underpinned by five ‘large-scale transnational processes’, which are globalization, commodification, securitization, mediatization, and postmodernization. We explore how a variety of substantive themes subsequently emerge within global consumer sport, which are diversely referenced by the papers in this special issue; these themes include social structures and divisions, celebrity culture, the making of sport consumers, and the glocal aspects of global consumer sport. We conclude by outlining the contents of the seven papers contained within this Special Issue.