Sacred and Profane: Baseball and Religion in America
Granzotto, Joseph M.
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In America, the game of baseball is far more important and meaningful than just a game. The look of grief and misery on the faces of 45,000 Tigers fans at game four of the 2012 World Series is a testament to the overwhelming power of baseball. The American obsession with baseball began well over 100 years ago and it has been and remains to this day a key aspect in the lives of millions of Americans. If we look at the game through a different lens, we can see how the stadiums, players, and environment can create an atmosphere in which the meaning and importance of the game can carry the same significance as a religion. Baseball can thereby become the medium through which communities are built and American virtues are spread throughout the country. In this case, baseball can be seen as a type of lived religion providing a meaningful experience for a community (and one that can potentially have a broader appeal than an established religion). By researching and commenting on the role of baseball, I search for a deeper meaning behind sport and, in the process, comment on how we define religion in America.