In This Chapter


Authored by: Luke J. Harris

Routledge Handbook of Sport, Race and Ethnicity

Print publication date:  September  2016
Online publication date:  September  2016

Print ISBN: 9781138816954
eBook ISBN: 9781315745886
Adobe ISBN: 9781317596677


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Britain has been the home of modern sport and since its emergence in the nineteenth century it has been central to the nation’s identity. Sport binds the nations of the United Kingdom together, but it also separates them and is perhaps the most prominent representation of the ‘imagined nation’. Throughout the twenty-first century, Britain has become an ethnically diverse nation. The 2011 UK Census revealed that ‘white British’ was the largest ethnic group, with nearly 80 per cent of the population (45.1 million), with just over 20 per cent of the population being of a different ethnic background. This was a decrease from 2001, when 91.3 per cent of the population described itself as ‘white British’.

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