Constructing ‘race/ethnicity’ and nationality in Spanish media: a content analysis of international football coverage

Carmen Longas Luque*, Jacco van Sterkenburg

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
85 Downloads (Pure)


Televised football in Spain enjoys great popularity as it is watched by millions of people every year. It has also been suggested as a site where ideas about race/ethnicity are (re)produced and national football teams have been proposed as key elements in the formation and/or confirmation of national identities. In this qualitative research we analyse the transcripts of 11 televised football matches of the Spanish national team with the goal of understanding how football commentators contribute to the construction of meanings about race/ethnicity and its intersections with nationality. Results showed how football commentators constructed racial difference by describing football players of diverse backgrounds in different ways. Furthermore, commentators made use of warlike language and national heroes in their construction of a narrative about the nation. These results will be interpreted and placed within the larger socio-historical context in the Discussion section.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1182-1198
Number of pages17
JournalMedia, Culture and Society
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 6 Apr 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This publication is part of the project ‘How racist is televised football and do audiences react?’, with project number 016.Vidi.185.174 of the research programme Vidi SGW which is (partly) financed by the Dutch Research Council (NWO).

Publisher Copyright: © The Author(s) 2022.

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