Out on 22 August 2019

The Age of Football

David Goldblatt

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22 August 2019
800 pages

The Age of Football is the epic exploration of society, politics, and economics in the twenty-first century through the prism of football, by the critically acclaimed author of The Ball is Round, David Goldblatt.

Football is the beautiful game. It has become the dominant sport on the planet; watched, played, talked about, and obsessed over by billions. From the grass roots of Africa and India, to the corruption of FIFA, the rise of China to the cauldron of Russia 2018, football is the common denominator that reaches across all social, political, and economic spheres. To understand the twenty-first century, its essence but also its future, we need to understand what football and its place in our lives means.

From watching kids play in the heart of Africa to surveying the catastrophe of the Maracanã stadium, stripped of every copper wire as well as its legacy, The Age of Football cuts across the inequities of economic globalization, the tumultuous impact of the rise of the global south, the dismal state of global governance and the rise of new, truly transnational, social movements. This is the definitive story of the present and future of the best game in the world.

Drawing comparisons with Adam Tooze’s Crashed, and Edward Gibbon’s The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, The Age of Football provides a radical but eye-opening guide to the new geography of globalization and the making and meaning of global football. With its eyes firmly on the realm of power and money that uses football for its own ends, it never loses sight of the simple game and its complex beauties that captivates the world.