Patriotism is displayed at the football stadiums in many different ways. It is expressed by fans through chants, flags and banners. Most of these contain national colours, national symbols, phrases from the national anthem or references to important historical events. Some supporter groups also use specific characters that they believe represent the nation, country and embody patriotic attitudes. These include mainly recognised historical figures – former rulers, liberators or famous warriors. However the persons from more recent history also appear – e.g. revolutionaries, popular leaders, politicians or armed resistance groups. At the same time, many supporters define their patriotism precisely by contesting these figures – by expressing opposition to them and to their vision of patriotism.
The concept of guerrilla patriotism (Nosal, Kossakowski & Woźniak, 2021) makes it possible to analyse not only the use of official national heroes by fans but also controversial figures who evoke strong reactions among others – support or rejection. This may be exemplified by the UPA (Ukrainian Insurgent Army) in Ukraine, the Ustaša organisation in Croatia, Arkan’s Tigers (Serbian Volunteer Guard) in Serbia, Cursed Soldiers in Poland, the ETA in the Basque Country and the IRA in Scotland (among some Celtic Glasgow fans), or Che Guevara in some European countries (eg. among 1. FC Sankt Pauli or Livorno supporters). In some cases this football-related memory policy may be in line in the official narratives of the ruling political elite (on a national, regional or local level), most often it is a contestation of the dominant discourse or an alternative for contemporary politicians and leaders.
The webinar aims to identify the figures which are perceived as patriotic role-models or anti-role-models by football fans. We want to initiate the discussion to include examples from all over the world. Reflecting on them will allow us to analyse the role such figures play in the national discourse of football stadiums.
The platform of the webinar is Microsoft Teams. Link is available here: WEBINAR. Time for the presentation is 15 minutes. The webinar is scheduled as one long meeting. We would be grateful if you would not disconnect during breaks, but only mute and switch off the cameras. Otherwise we will have to let you in from the waiting room each time. Participation is free.
The meeting is scheduled on April 1, 2022, from 9.00 to 15.45, UTC+2. Please check the time in your zone by using TIME ZONE CONVERTER.
09:00–09:15 Opening, with Jean-Michel de Waele
Please send any questions about the webinar to Przemysław Nosal (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Jean-Michel De Waele
Professeur de Science politique
Université Libre de Bruxelles
Tel : 00.32.650.44.81
Avenue Jeanne 44, 1050 Bruxelles, Belgique