The Meritocracy Trap and Kinesiology

Click name to view affiliation

Gregg Twietmeyer Department of Kinesiology, Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS, USA

Search for other papers by Gregg Twietmeyer in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8352-0495 *
and
Tyler G. Johnson Department of Kinesiology, Boise State University, Boise, ID, USA

Search for other papers by Tyler G. Johnson in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8240-4209
Restricted access

Meritocracy continues to dominate conventional thinking in the postmodern West. Yet, recently, an increasing number of critics have highlighted how meritocracy has gone wrong. One such critic is Daniel Markovits, author of The Meritocracy Trap. In this article, we highlight the major themes of Markovits’s book, identify how the ideology of meritocracy has infiltrated kinesiology and sport, and then propose how to reconceptualize and redirect kinesiology toward a more humane and morally sound discipline, which can avoid the pitfalls of the meritocracy trap. Most notably, we propose that kinesiology should (a) recognize the frailty and temporality of humans, (b) embrace the wide middle of human skill performance capabilities, (c) value mid-level jobs and occupations such as physical education teaching and YMCA and/or city recreation department positions, and (d) redefine what counts as success.

  • Collapse
  • Expand
All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 1054 486 38
Full Text Views 559 519 0
PDF Downloads 89 36 0