Pulling back the curtain on mobility and labour migration in the production of mega-events

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference proceeding with ISSN or ISBNChapter


“BEHOLD! The Great and Wonderful OZ!” Like the supplicants coming to see the Wizard of OZ, there is a sense that humble everyday folk should tremble before the magisterial might of the Olympic and other mega-event wizards producing the spectacles set before lowly supplicants/consumers. The Opening Ceremonies are the grandest performance of the Olympic spectacle. The “magic” behind the scenes is one that the public is not meant to know. That magic includes massive amounts of labour by a range of labourers. We are to be “wow-ed” by the extravagance of it all without wondering what the actual costs of such an entertainment might be. The centrality of the Olympics as the quintessential mega-event, and the most spectacular product of the mega-events industry, means that crucial questions regarding how more basic products (i.e., buildings, equipment and clothing) necessary for the manufacture of a spectacle are predominantly ignored. Furthermore, the focus on the Olympic spectacles themselves makes it appear that these sorts of happenings are the most important activity happening on the planet (Girginov 2010; Horne and Whannel 2012; Miah and Garcia 2012).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMega-event mobilities: a critical analysis
EditorsN.A. Salazar, C. Timmerman, J. Wets, S. Van den Brouke
Place of PublicationAbingdon
ISBN (Print)9781138217539
Publication statusPublished - 15 Dec 2016

Publication series

NameRoutledge Critical Studies in Urbanism and the City


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