“Look who is laughing now”: Physical capital, boxing, and the prevention of repeat victimisation

Authors

  • Deborah Jump Manchester Metropolitan University

Keywords:

Boxing, violence, psychosocial, Boxeo, violencia, psicosocial

Abstract

This paper’s aim is to further current thinking around young men’s perceptions and understanding of violence, and the use of boxing as a vehicle in the prevention of repeat victimization. The focus is on the use of bodily or physical capital, and the ways in which men draw upon this resource to ward off attacks to identity and psyches, especially those perceived as disrespectful. It will draw on data from The Criminology of Boxing, Violence and Desistance (Jump 2020), and present overarching ideas from Tyrone, a psychosocial case study highlighting the underpinning theory and its development. This paper disrupts common discourses that argue that boxing is a panacea for all violence, and thus presents more subjective nuanced accounts of men’s lives in the gym, and the streets. In using the term “physical capital”, I employ Wacquant’s (1995) theory, and suggest that boxers not only use their body as a “form of capital” (p. 65), but that the physical capital accrued through the corporeal praxis of boxing, is actually a way to disavow prior victimization, and invest in the prevention of repeated traumatic scenarios.

El objetivo de este artículo es ayudar al avance de la reflexión sobre las percepciones y concepciones de los hombres jóvenes sobre la violencia, y el uso del boxeo como vehículo para prevenir la victimización reiterada. La atención prioritaria es sobre el uso del capital corporal o físico, y cómo los hombres recurren a él para prevenir ataques a la identidad o a la psique, sobre todo aquellos percibidos como irrespetuosos. Se parte de datos de The Criminology of Boxing, Violence and Desistance (Jump 2020), y se presentan ideas generales de Tyrone, un estudio de caso psicosocial que arroja luz sobre la teoría subyacente y su desarrollo. El artículo rompe con el discurso común de que el boxeo es la panacea para toda violencia, y así presenta testimonios matizados más subjetivos de las vidas de hombres en el gimnasio y en las calles. Al usar el término “capital físico”, utilizo la teoría de Wacquant (1995) y sugiero que los boxeadores no sólo usan su cuerpo como una “forma de capital” (p. 65), sino que el capital físico adquirido a través de la praxis corporal del boxeo es en realidad una forma de negar victimizaciones previas y de invertir en la prevención de escenarios traumáticos reiterados.

Available from: https://doi.org/10.35295/osls.iisl/0000-0000-0000-1171

Author Biography

Deborah Jump, Manchester Metropolitan University

Deborah Jump is Senior Lecturer in Criminology at the Manchester Metropolitan University. She has over fifteen years’ experience of working in youth justice as both a practitioner and service manager. She is the Head of Youth Justice at the Manchester Centre for Youth Studies and was previously the recipient of a Winston Churchill Memorial Fund evaluating the impact of sporting programmes on communities in the USA. Contact details: Manchester Metropolitan University, Dept of Sociology, Geoffrey Manton Building, M15 6LL. Email address: d.jump@mmu.ac.uk

Downloads

Published

01-10-2021

How to Cite

Jump, D. (2021) “‘Look who is laughing now’: Physical capital, boxing, and the prevention of repeat victimisation”, Oñati Socio-Legal Series, 11(5), pp. 1095–1113. Available at: https://opo.iisj.net/index.php/osls/article/view/1222 (Accessed: 5 December 2021).