Athletes confessions: the sports biography as an interaction ritual
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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- Artikler / Articles 
Original versionScandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports. 2014, 25, 280-288
Commercialization of emotions is not a new phenomenon but in Denmark there is a new general trend to tell and sell personal stories in the media. Personal deprivation and crises are also major topics in sports media. This paper focuses on sports biographies as a book genre that is reviving in popularity. The paper approaches the topic through the biographies of one Danish athlete: the former professional cyclist, Jesper Skibby, who writes about his doping disclosure and shares his personal dilemmas as a former elite sportsman. The thematic text analysis orientates around social interactions, emotions, and personality constructions. Inspired by microsociology with a Durkheimian flavor of Goffman and Hochschild, themes including “face work,” “interaction rituals,” and “emotions management” are discussed. The analysis claims that sharing personal information in the media is not only a means of confession and reclaiming status but is also business and management – on an intimate level. Telling the story of the corrosion of a sporting character has become a hot issue, an entertainment, and not least a commercial commitment.
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