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ASU's Institute for Humanities Research announces new sports initiative


Portrait of ASU Clinical Associate Professor Victoria Jackson.

Victoria Jackson, clinical associate professor of history at ASU's School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies.

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August 16, 2023

The Institute for Humanities Research (IHR) at Arizona State University has announced the addition this fall of Sports @ IHR to their roster of initiatives. Victoria Jackson, a clinical associate professor of history in ASU's School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies, will spearhead the new initiative as its director.

“The IHR is thrilled to add this significant sports initiative to our supported programming,” said IHR Director Ron Broglio. “Victoria Jackson’s extensive background as both an athlete and sports historian will help us strengthen partnerships, engage the community and develop strategic alliances.”

Jackson leads the sports humanities at ASU and teaches a package of sports history courses, which forms part of the interdisciplinary, liberal arts undergraduate Sports, Cultures and Ethics certificate. She is affiliated faculty with the American studies program in the School of Social Transformation and a Global Sport Scholar with the Global Sport Institute at ASU. Jackson also serves on advisory boards of nonprofits with missions focused on sport and social change, and has long been involved with local, national and international organizations focused on helping girls and women find their power through sport.

The Sports @ IHR Initiative brings together scholars across The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and throughout the university and broader community to make meaning out of sport. This new initiative provides opportunities to learn from each other and create new knowledge in research seminars and public events. It will also support work that provides solutions to complex cultural, societal and ethical challenges in sports institutions, as well as in the broader societies that sporting spaces reflect and influence.

Jackson writes for a variety of publications on sport and society topics, bringing a historical lens to present-day issues and making policy recommendations for the future. Her op-eds and magazine articles on subjects like college sports reform and redesign, athlete activism, gender equity and inclusive sport have appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Slate, The Independent (UK), The Athletic and Sportico, among other media outlets. She has appeared on "60 Minutes," where she discussed American college sports, and is a frequent podcast, radio, TV and documentary film commentator. She is slated to appear before Congress in September to testify before a congressional hearing on behalf of the Commission on the State of U.S. Olympics and Paralympics.

The Institute for Humanities Research fosters academic and public programming that keeps us asking questions and developing our understanding of the past and present to imagine greater futures. It supports several interdisciplinary initiatives, including Applied Theory, Blue Humanities, Desert Humanities and Health Humanities. It also supports research and creative engagement with what it means to be human in a constantly changing world, connecting university and partner communities in celebrating the best of what the humanities can accomplish across cultures, time and space.

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