3us to move beyond a common-sense perception of sports scandals often adopted uncritically incontemporary studies. To guide this work, other scientific fields such as political science and businessstudies will be included, as these areas have a long tradition of dealing with scandals, referred to as`scandology´ (Neckel, 2005, p. 101). Our basic assumption is that, although there are significantdifferences between sport, business and politics, scandals emerging in these three spheres of societyshare some underlying similarities. Therefore, our general theoretical framework will draw on literatureexplicitly dealing with political and business scandals in order to develop an appropriate model of thesports scandal.
Approaching the sports scandal: the (contingent) choice of theory
The choice and combination of theories to undertake such a task is fundamentally contingent. As pointedout by Stäheli (1995, p. 3), only the success of our steps is able to legitimize our decisions. Takingexisting literature a step further, the argumentation of the article rests on the suggestion that acombination of systems theory and discourse theory establishes an analytical frame capable of reachingthe necessary level of abstraction together with being operational for analytic purposes.Several scholars have developed
(1982; 1986; 1990b; 1990a; 1995a; 1995b; 1997b;1997a; 2000b; 2002) systems theory in order to understand the development of sport in modern society(see Bette, 1999; Tangen, 1997; 2000; 2004; Cachay, 1988; Thyssen, 2000; Stichweh, 1990; Schimank,1988). These perspectives point to important ways of understanding meaning and sports communicationand, therefore, to the
otential for sports scandal analysis.This being said, certain theoretical aspects within the systems theoretical framework need to bedeveloped in order to grasp the phenomenon in question. Three important aspects come to mind inconnection with what is often regarded as the underdeveloped notion of subjectivity
perspective (or his perception of causality; see Joas (1995, p. 211ff) for an in-depth critique):
, itis hard to find any other social activity in which the individual (and the body) is focused upon to such asignificant extent as in sport. Performances and actions in this area of society are regarded almostentirely as being the direct result of the will of the individual in question (Tangen, 2000, p. 74ff; Tangen,1997, p. 34; Rowe, 1994).
, and related to the first point, scandals often develop around (a) keyperson(s) (seen as the transgressor/transgressors of specific expectations, norms or values) and certain
(Thompson, 2000, p. 19) alarmed by the transgression (Adut, 2008, pp. 11-12).
, the sports scandal contains political elements, as moral communication emerges when a scandalappears. Demand for political intervention or pressure for preventing the scandal from occurring againhave, in many cases, made sports scandals an object of public debate and scrutiny. Viewed through the