Peat, George (2016) Deconstructing the Hooligan Identity: A Critical Narrative Analysis of Experiences Involving Football Violence. Masters thesis, University of Huddersfield.

Football violence and the so-called ‘football hooligan’ have been much discussed, displayed, and theorised across both academic and media platforms. However, little attention has been given to the identities of the men that reside behind the ‘football hooligan’ label. Using a critical narrative analysis framework, and drawing on key theories in relation to identity, and identity development, this study has looked to explore the identities of a group of men who were involved in football violence from a narrative perspective to gain insight into both their perception of, and role within a group formation, as well as their perception of their identities before, during, and after participation in football violence. The findings of the study reveal how whilst the majority of the men involved in the study self-identified as being part of the same group, their perceptions and experiences of that group differed greatly. As such, the study poses questions to mainstream theories of group behaviour. Furthermore, it represents the uniqueness of a narrative study in this field in its ability to allow for in-depth narrative accounts to be displayed in a subject field that is often wildly stereotyped and generalised.

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