Tailgating to Victory

Tailgate party next to the stadiumAs tailgaters everywhere ramp up for another weekend of college football, University of Notre Dame marketing professor and cultural anthropologist John Sherry has just concluded first-of-its-kind research that shows those huge pre-game parking lot parties build community, nurture tradition, and actually contribute to a college or university brand—at least for the fans.

In their study, “A Cultural Analysis of Tailgating,” Sherry and co-author Tonya Bradford, assistant professor of marketing at Notre Dame, examine American culture and our obsession with football, which Sherry calls “the best metaphor we have for describing American culture.” He likens tailgating to ancient harvest festivals, during which people enjoy the fall weather and abundance of the summer harvest with massive consumption and celebration before the arrival of winter. But tailgating is a different kind of ritual than any other, says Sherry, even though there’s the atmosphere of a festival or carnival.

Read more at ND Newswire

 by Daily Domer Staff

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