Losing control of the ball: The Political Economy of Football and the Media in Australia

Murray G. Phillips, Brett Hutchins

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


This article examines the political economy of one of Australia's prominent football codes: Rugby League.A Marxist-influenced political economy approach is used to emphasize processes of domination, subordination, and resistance in the production and reproduction of power relations within capitalist sporting relations and structures. Analysis, framed around the concepts of MediaSport and the media sport cultural complex, shows how Rugby League is bound up in both national and global media processes. Key areas under examination include the historical development of the commodification of Rugby League, the growth of the media sport cultural complex, the role of pay television and the control of Rugby League vested in the transnational company News Corporation, and the supporter resistance to corporate media control in the sport.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-232
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Sport and Social Issues
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • media
  • political economy
  • rugby

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