Sports and national identity. A brief history of Indian hockey 1928 - 1980
Research Paper (postgraduate) from the year 2015 in the subject Sport - Sport History, , language: English, abstract: This paper tries to probe into many intricate questions regarding the hockey career of India. The previous works mainly deal with the golden years of Indian hockey when India was supreme in the hockey field. But in my paper, I will try to show how the game hockey created a national identity among the Indians and what factors helped hockey in being the national game of India where football and cricket was also popular. The first section of the paper will deal with the birth of hockey in India and its journey to the international sports field. In this section I will discuss which factors made hockey the 'golden game' of India. What held the hockey group together which lacked in the other team sports and the American influence in Indian hockey. In this section we will discuss how hockey helped in creating a national identity for the Indians. The seed of nationalism started growing among Indian hockey players and there were several instances which showed that this game helped them create a national identity. This section will try to uphold these instances where a colonized nation could create an identity due to a game. While it was the British who helped spread hockey in India, they were not present when the Indians won their first gold medal. Several Indian newspapers documented this incident and it is very interesting to see the reaction of the colonizers. In this section we will discuss that in detail. In the concluding section we will deal with the factors which led to the deterioration of Indian hockey and why slowly cricket became more popular than it.
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