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Introduction et diffusion du handball en France : des origines étrangères à l'affirmation nationale française (1922-2004)

Abstract : Unlike the other team sports brought to France in the second half of the 19th century, handball thrived in France between the First and the Second World Wars. It has moved since then from a winter training practice to become a professional activity at the beginning of the 21st century. The objective of our research is to explain the integration and propagation processes of this sport, with geopolitical as well as technical and tactical considerations. A variety of sources have been investigated – institutional archives, testimonies of 25 stakeholders, press articles, periodicals about handball – with regards to three axis – institutional, social and cultural – ; four stages have been identified in the development of handball in France. The first phase is the importation of handball through two dissemination vectors that have different scales and paces: the sport of the working class and school sport. The Vichy government creates the FFHB, which is associated to a few Physical Education teachers that are captivated by this new activity – football played with hands in teams of 7 or 11 players. Then, when the handball is mainly played in teams of 7, its cultural representation changes: it goes from a superposition of individual technics to the need of taking into consideration teammates and opponents. This revolution is supported by the national technical direction in the 1960’s and 1970’s and is linked to the scientific thoughts in France and abroad ; meanwhile, Nelson Paillou makes handball available to the masses and structures the federal system with the objective to promote non professional handball. With the collapse of the communist bloc, federal managers and trainers choose to favour high-level sport and contribute to the first French successes. From the 1990’s, they also start developing the commercial aspect and the spectacle aspect of the sport. However, at the dawn of the 21st century, handball finally moves away from international models and follows the development of the other team sports with a more professional structure and stakeholders.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, December 17, 2019 - 2:45:57 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, February 27, 2020 - 2:52:16 PM


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Lise Cardin. Introduction et diffusion du handball en France : des origines étrangères à l'affirmation nationale française (1922-2004). Education. Université de Strasbourg, 2019. Français. ⟨NNT : 2019STRAG028⟩. ⟨tel-02416011v1⟩



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