May 1, 2020

Episode 4: What’s Wrong with the Olympics?

In episode four, Derek and Nathan chat with Jules Boykoff, Professor and Department Chair of Politics and Government at Pacific University. He is the author of four books on the Olympics, including Power Games: A Political History of the Olympics (Verso, 2016), Activism and the Olympics: Dissent at the Games in Vancouver and London (Rutgers University Press, 2014), Celebration Capitalism and the Olympic Games (Routledge, 2013) and the just-released NOlympians: Inside the Fight Against Capitalist Mega-Sports in Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Beyond (Fernwood, 2020). He has published countless pieces of public scholarship, including recent op-eds in the NY Times and on NBC, and is a former college soccer player at the University of Wisconsin and University of Portland and former professional indoor soccer player.

Jules systematically takes us through the myriad problems with the Olympics as an institution and the Tokyo games in particular, including the lingering radiation in Fukushima (which he visited last year with Dave Zirin). He also explains the activism of the DSA against the LA games and where activism and public scholarship fit in his own life. Finally, as a bonus, he shares his views on the NCAA and the extent to which his experience as a scholar, activist, and athletic laborer have shaped his outlook on sport.

You can find the editorial he co-authored in the BJSM with Robert Mann, Bryan Clift, and Sheree Bekker here. Nathan's academic journal article on the Vancouver Opening Ceremonies is here.

As always, please like, share, and rate us on your favorite podcast app, and give follow us on Twitter or Instagram.

@Derekcrim

@Nkalamb

@EndofSportPod

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