In this paper the ideological relationships between the media and Australian sport are examined from a critical perspective. After outlining the contributions of political economy, structuralism, and cultural studies to the critical paradigm, we argue that the Australian media have two main ideological effects. First, they legitimate masculine hegemony, capitalist rationality, consensus, and militaristic nationalism. Second, they marginalize, trivialize, and fragment alternative ideologies of sport. We conclude by suggesting some worthwhile topics for future research and by affirming that politicizing media representations of sport is an important part of the counter-hegemonic struggle in patriarchal capitalist societies.
Direct all correspondence to Jim McKay, Departments of Anthropology & Sociology and of Human Movement Studies, University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Qld., 4067 Australia.