`Bringing the game into disrepute': the Ben Cousins saga, sports entertainment, player welfare and surveillance in the Australian Football League

Kelly, P and Hickey, C 2012, '`Bringing the game into disrepute': the Ben Cousins saga, sports entertainment, player welfare and surveillance in the Australian Football League', Asia-Pacific Journal of Health, Sport and Physical Education , vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 35-50.


Document type: Journal Article
Collection: Journal Articles

Title `Bringing the game into disrepute': the Ben Cousins saga, sports entertainment, player welfare and surveillance in the Australian Football League
Author(s) Kelly, P
Hickey, C
Year 2012
Journal name Asia-Pacific Journal of Health, Sport and Physical Education
Volume number 3
Issue number 1
Start page 35
End page 50
Total pages 16
Publisher Routledge
Abstract In 2007 the elite Australian Rules footballer Ben Cousins was suspended by the Australian Football League for 12 months for `bringing the game into disrepute'. Cousins was the first, and at the time of writing, the only player to be suspended by the AFL for actions and behaviors that were claimed to be damaging to the reputation of the game and the industry. The paper explores how globalized developments in the sports entertainment environment have changed the expectations that competition administrators, clubs, sponsors, fans and the wider public/audiences have about the behaviors of elite performers in these industries. Our focus is on the ways in which the Australian (Rules) Football League scrutinizes and regulates player behaviors in relation to the reputation of the game. Drawing on Foucault's work on the government of the self and of others, and Lash and Lury's work on the global culture industry we raise concerns about the consequences of this surveillance of all aspects of the person as elite performer, and the ways in which ideas about repute can be used to regulate and sanction player behaviors.
Subject Sociology not elsewhere classified
Keyword(s) AFL
Ben Cousins
brand management
player welfare
risk management
surveillance
sports entertainment industry
DOI - identifier 10.1080/18377122.2012.666197
Copyright notice © 2012 Australian Council for Health, Physical Education and Recreation
ISSN 1837-7122
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