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frontstage


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A concept referring to the public social space or region in which social life is experienced by both those who make particular cultural performances, and those for whom such performances are prepared. It is defined in relation to the backstage sphere or region in which less public, what might be called pre-performance, acts take place. The term was developed by Erving Goffman, in his work on the ways in which catering professionals worked in a hotel in the Shetland Isles, Scotland. The public performance of the waiter contrasted with the working style alongside workmates when back in the hotel kitchen: the latter exhibited the crofters' culture in matters of working dynamics and status interaction, eating patterns, and modes of dress. Sport performance, particularly at the higher competitive levels, is managed and performed as a form of frontstage operation, premised on a sophisticated sphere of backstage activities in the treatment room, the dressing room, and the more closeted culture of the team and/or the club.

Subjects: Sport and Leisure.


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