Category Archives: podcast

Examined Sport: Stephen Finn, “In Defense of the Playoff System”

In this episode of Examined Sport, I look at Stephen Finn’s article “In Defense of the Playoff System” (Journal of the Philosophy of Sport, 2009). In this article, Finn sets out first to challenge critiques of the playoff system from Nicholas Dixon and William Morgan, and then to offer his positive defense of the playoff system.

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Examined Sport: Pam Sailors, “Mixed Competition and Mixed Messages”

In this episode of Examined Sport, I look at Pam Sailors’ “Mixed Competition and Mixed Messages.” Sailors takes up the question of sex segregation in sport by critiquing Jane English’s 1978 “Sex Equality in Sport”. Sailors then discusses how to deal with the complexity of gender in sport and how best to structure competitions.

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Examined Sport: Jane English, “Sex Equality in Sports”

In this episode of Examined Sport, I look at Jane English’s “Sex Equality in Sports,” published in Philosophy and Public Affairs in 1978. In this classic and influential paper, English examines what equal opportunity for women in sports means and what it implies.

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  • Jane English, “Sex Equality in Sports,” Philosophy & Public Affairs, Vol. 7, No. 3 (Spring, 1978), pp. 269-277

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Filed under Examined Sport, podcast, Sports Ethics, Women's Sports

Examined Sport: Nicholas Dixon, “A Moral Critique of Mixed Martial Arts”

In this episode of Examined Sport, I discuss Nicholas Dixon’s “A Moral Critique of Mixed Martial Arts” published in Public Affairs Quarterly in 2015. This paper is one of the first philosophical analyses of the sport of MMA.

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Examined Sport: Nicholas Dixon, “Boxing, Paternalism, and Legal Moralism”

In this episode of Examined Sport, I discuss Nicholas Dixon’s “Boxing, Paternalism, and Legal Moralism” published in Social Theory and Practice in April 2001. While Dixon is not the first to address moral questions about the sport of boxing, this paper is important because Dixon focuses on what he calls pre-emptive paternalism as the basis for restrictions on boxing. This conception of paternalism has since been influential in the philosophy of sport on a wide range of issues from doping to banning of American football.

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Examined Sport: Scott Kretchmar, “From Test to Contest: An Analysis of Two Kinds of Counterpoint in Sport”

After a long hiatus, Examined Sport is back! Look for new episodes every two weeks.


In this episode of Examined Sport, I discuss Scott Kretchmar’s “From Test to Contest: An Analysis of Two Kinds of Counterpoint in Sport” published in the Journal of Philosophy of Sport in 1975. One of the foundational papers of the discipline, Kretchmar examines the distinction between tests and contests. The paper introduces several ideas that are influential on Kretchmar’s later work and on other thinkers in the field.

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Outside the Studio: Sports Betting

I had a fun conversation with Matthew Blittner, Daniel Green, and Walt Bonné from the Outside The Studio radio show/podcast on Friday. We talked about how the perception of sports betting has changed over the last few years and what some of ethical implications of the legalization of wagering on sports are.

The podcast is available on Apple, Spotify, and elsewhere: https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/outsidethestudio/episodes/2021-02-12T14_21_55-08_00

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Examined Sport: Randolph Feezell, “Sportsmanship and Blowouts”

In this episode of Examined Sport, I look at Randolph Feezell’s “Sportsmanship and Blowouts: Baseball and Beyond.” Published in the Journal of the Philosophy of Sport in 1999, Feezell responds to Nicholas Dixon’s paper on blowouts that was the subject of a previous episode of Examined Sport. Feezell proposes what he calls the Revised Anti-Blowout thesis to better explain the ethics of blowouts.

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Examined Sport: Nicholas Dixon, “On Sportsmanship and Running Up the Score”

Published in the Journal of the Philosophy of Sport in 1992, Nicholas Dixon’s paper: “On Sportsmanship and Running up the Score” spurred a discussion on the ethics of wide-margin victories in sport. Dixon argues against what he calls the Anti-Blowout Thesis. Blowouts are not, on his view, always or necessarily unsporting.

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Examined Sport: Kathleen Pearson, “Deception, Sportsmanship, and Ethics”

Kathleen Pearson’s “Deception, Sportsmanship, and Ethics,” published in Quest in 1973, analyzes the ethical status of deception in sport and athletics. This short and exceptionally clear paper influenced later work regarding deception and fouls in sport.

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Filed under Examined Sport, Fouls, podcast, sportsmanship