Zachary David Kaufman

just another page on the internet

‘merican individualism

I recently read a neat article by Tim Struby in ESPN’s May 31 issue that was about the growing soccer fandom in America. There are groups of people who travel around the world and buy tickets in certain sections to try and build an American presence at games and show support. The group tries to get USA fans started in chanting and singing, but often to no avail. The groups talk about how minimal USA support often is at games. Here’s the part I found especially interesting:

“While it’s understandable that Americans want to emulate the enthusiastic fans of soccer-crazed countries, it’s easy to see why all the singing and chanting hasn’t caught on. America doesn’t have a group culture; it’s a melting pot of individualism. At an MLB game or NFL game, fans share a team loyalty but not a unified cultural history.”

As I sit here watching the Blackhawks finally get a goal and immediately add a second, I almost wonder if this is the closest thing American sports has to singing. After each goal, the fans in Chicago sing in unison, but only from the prompt of the sound system. Other attempts that just aren’t enough for me include the traditional seventh inning stretch ode “Take Me Out to the Ball Game.”

It all makes me wonder what needs to change if we want to create a group culture.


Written by zdkaufman

May 31, 2010 at 9:32 pm

Posted in Thought

%d bloggers like this: