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O Captain! My Captain!: leadership, virtue, and sport / John William Devine

Journal of the Philosophy of Sport, Volume: 48, Issue: 1, Pages: 45 - 62

Swansea University Author: John William, Devine

  • Accepted Manuscript under embargo until: 30th May 2022

Abstract

There is a crisis of leadership in sport. Leadership as an athletic excellence is under threat from the deepening influence of coaches on in-game decisionmaking. To appreciate what is being lost in this shift of responsibility, it is necessary to understand the challenge of athlete leadership. Capta...

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Published in: Journal of the Philosophy of Sport
ISSN: 0094-8705 1543-2939
Published: Informa UK Limited 2021
Online Access: Check full text

URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa55612
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Abstract: There is a crisis of leadership in sport. Leadership as an athletic excellence is under threat from the deepening influence of coaches on in-game decisionmaking. To appreciate what is being lost in this shift of responsibility, it is necessary to understand the challenge of athlete leadership. Captaincy is the quintessential on-field leadership role. However, the role of captain, and athlete leadership more widely, remains philosophically untheorized. This paper initiates a discussion of leadership in sport by providing the first normative account of captaincy. Rugby union is used as a case study, as this sport preserves an especially demanding and complex form of captaincy that may provide a rough template for the revival of athlete leadership in other sports. A virtue theoretical analysis of the role is developed based on a functionalist conception of virtue. It is argued that discharging the responsibilities of such captaincy requires two key virtues: ‘sporting judgement’ and ‘responsibility’.
Keywords: Captaincy; Leadership; Virtue Ethics; Judgement; Rugby Union
College: College of Engineering
Issue: 1
Start Page: 45
End Page: 62