This book presents a synthesis of the work on early football undertaken by the authors over the past two decades. It explores aspects of a figurational approach to sociology to examine the early development of football rules in the middle part of the nineteenth century. The book tests Dunning's status rivalry hypothesis to contest Harvey's view of football's development which stresses an influential sub-culture outside the public schools. Status Rivalry re-states the primacy of these latter institutions in the growth of football and without it the sport's story would remain skewed and unbalanced for future generations.
Graham Curry is a postgraduate of the University of Leicester.
Eric Dunning is Emeritus Professor at the University of Leicester.
Introduction 1 The Folk Antecedents of Modern Football 2 Public School Status Rivalry and the Early Development of Football: The Cases of Eton and Rugby 3 The Universities and Codification 4 The Sheffield Footballing Sub-culture and Other Early Clubs 5 The Emergence of the Football Association 6 The Advent of Professionalism 7 The Origins of Football Debate Conclusion 171