Global Sports and Contemporary China

Global Sports and Contemporary China
This book examines the formation of a globally oriented sports system in China, from the beginning of the reform process in 1978 to the present, focusing on the period after the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. It analyses how this system has shaped domestic social class identities and its role in international Chinese state politics. Despite advances in the marketization of the sports industry through previous eras, the Chinese state expanded investment in a set of global sports following the heavily government-directed drive towards national success at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympic Games. This would be a time when the government focused on policies set to service a growing domestic middle-class and an increasingly wide-ranging set of international interests, with sporting investments being at the heart of their strategic plan. However, reform has proven difficult. The book presents a well-rounded account of this effort with tennis and soccer providing important case studies of the internal and external dynamics of this time. As such, the book will be of interest to researchers and students of globalization of sport, those studying East Asian sports development, and those who are interested in understanding China more broadly.


Oliver Rick and Longxi Li


Palgrave Macmillan



Publication date

1 Dec 2022 – 31 Jan 2023


Social Sciences


Urban / Rural
Art and Culture