Writing Topic 22. Kirklands Nine Week Assignment Dougherty High Assignment

430 words - 2 pages

What the Olympic spectacle presents us with is an ethos almost entirely at odds with that writ large in today’s mainstream cultural script, rich as it is in relativism and low aspiration. You can see this in the contradiction between the International Olympics Committee’s jargonised and buzzworded articulation of the spirit of the Olympics, with its emphasis on encouraging ‘pluralism’ and ‘cultural diversity’, and the Olympics itself. After all, there is nothing plural or diverse about a sprint competition. It is exclusive. There is equality of opportunity, of striving and struggling to run faster, leap higher, throw further – it’s universally human in that sense. But there can only be one winner, not many or plural winners. The Olympics establishes a strict hierarchy, not a loose plurality, cultural or otherwise.
In fact, there is so much about the implicit ethos of the Olympics (which becomes explicit in the heated spectacle of competition) that runs counter to mainstream cultural norms. Think, for example, of what it takes to become a competitor: the self-sacrifice; the intense discipline; the will to put oneself through physical and psychological pain in pursuit of that golden objective. That’s why, at the last, there is a solidarity among competitors, whether winners or losers – they know...

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