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date: 07 April 2020

ascribed and achieved status 

Source:
A Dictionary of Sports Studies
Author(s):

Alan Tomlinson

An individual's position in a culture and society is the outcome of a combination of ascribed status characteristics—physical features, age, sex, ethnicity—and achieved status that might be gained through education or competition with others. Competitive sport, understood as an open meritocratic field of human endeavour, is by such definition a field in which achieved status is gained as a consequence and form of personal accomplishment. Yet in some sports—basketball is an obvious example—physical qualities are an important determining dimension in the career trajectory of the athlete; and in historical terms, some sports have been used as markers of a particular given status (ascribed and inflexible) reinforcing, for instance, divisions of social class and gender.... ...

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