‘You are always on our mind’: The Hillsborough tragedy as cultural trauma

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Hughson, John and Spaaij, Ramon ORCID: 0000-0002-1260-3111 (2011) ‘You are always on our mind’: The Hillsborough tragedy as cultural trauma. Acta Sociologica, 54 (3). pp. 283-295. ISSN 0001-6993 (print) 1502-3869 (online)


Twenty years have passed since the Hillsborough tragedy, which eventually resulted in the deaths of 96 supporters of Liverpool Football Club. This article draws upon the cultural trauma theory developed by Piotr Sztompka to provide a sociological understanding of the localized experience of public grief that has followed the tragic occurrence. The authors analyse the different stages of cultural traumatization, with a particular focus on the conflicting emic and etic representations of the Hillsborough tragedy with regard to opposite constructions of ‘truth’ and the attribution of blame. It is shown that while Hillsborough may be a matter of recollection and regret for the wider, (inter)national, public, the cultural trauma of Hillsborough for the people of ‘Liverpool’ is far from over.

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Item type Article
URI https://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/24929
DOI 10.1177/0001699311412623
Official URL http://asj.sagepub.com/content/54/3/283.abstract
Subjects Historical > FOR Classification > 1106 Human Movement and Sports Science
Historical > FOR Classification > 2002 Cultural Studies
Current > Division/Research > College of Sports and Exercise Science
Keywords cultural trauma, football, Hillsborough, Liverpool, social change
Citations in Scopus 10 - View on Scopus
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