1 Sport, Individual & Society, Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet2 North Central College3 Sport, Individual & Society, Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports, Faculty of Science, Københavns Universitet4 North Central College
This article deals with the images, metaphors and narratives in the media coverage of doping in the United States. It presents a case study with a focus on Marion Jones, the most celebrated track athlete of the turn of the millennium, and her husband, C.J. Hunter, a shot put world champion convicted of doping. The material consists of sport reports about the 2000 Olympic Games in three American newspapers. These Games proved controversial due to the allegations and inquiries of the media (both national and international) regarding doping issues and the prominence of the American athletes under suspicion. At the same time, the 2000 Olympics can be considered a watershed in American anti-doping policy. The media portrayed Jones and Hunter as the Beauty and the Beast or Svengali and his victim, using a famous fairy tale and a well-known novel to capture attention, label the protagonists and convey their interpretation of the story as well as their anti-doping messages. Their narratives focused on a relationship that also addressed questions about power as well as about gender and race. Beast was a synonym for Hunter, but it could also be used as a metaphor for doping that was framed exclusively in a moral discourse and regarded as a disgrace, a scandal and a contagious individual failure.
Sport in Society, 2015, Vol 18, Issue 2, p. 136-154