Roger Bannister and the Four Minute Mile
Sports Myth and Sports History
By (author) John Bale
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Roger Bannister and the Four Minute Mile by John Bale
Book DescriptionRoger Bannister was the first person to run the mile in under four minutes. Fifty years on, his status, not just as a champion athlete but also as a true British hero, a gentleman and an amateur from a 'golden era' in sport, retains its unblemished appeal. Until now there has been little criticism and even less close historical study of Bannister and his achievement. This book redresses the balance, presenting a revisionist history of Sir Roger Bannister and in doing so providing fresh insights into the making of this British 'champion'. This book does more than detail the history of a sporting giant. It invites the reader to reconsider the very words often used to describe him - notably 'hero' and 'gentleman amateur'. Informed by contemporary sport science, the text also questions the significance of the four-minute mile. Providing fascinating insights into the history of track racing as well as athletic training methods and the beginnings of sport science, this is not just a testimonial to the legend of Roger Bannister, but instead is the first rigorous historical study of his sporting life and the man behind the legend. It reveals him as an ambivalent athlete, highly achievement-orientated and scientific, but also in love with the freedom of running sensuously in nature, in contrast to the constraints of modern sport.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780415346078
(198mm x 129mm x 13mm)
Imprint: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publish Date: 28-Oct-2005
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author John Bale
Four-Minute Mile, Paperback (August 2014)View all books by John Bale
The four-minute mile was roundly believed to be impossible until Roger Bannister shattered the illusion with half a second to spare in May 1954. The essays in this book look at the background to Bannister's achievement and the meaning that was ascribed to it by the media and the public at large.
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Author Biography - John Bale
Keele University, UK
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