PCS Prisms

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In general parlance, the term prism is used figuratively to refer to the points of clarification or insight realized by thinking through/within a particular viewpoint.  With this understanding in mind, our goal is to identify and acknowledge key PCS Prisms: the influential works (in empirical, theoretical, axiological, and/or methodological terms) whose insights and clarifications contribute in important ways to PCS’s derivation, present focus, and future development.


Clearly, the establishment of PCS Prisms is, necessarily, both a collective and contentious process.  This is because there are likely to be significant differences of opinion regarding the influence, or otherwise, of a particular work on the PCS project.  Having said that, the very process of identifying commonly agreed works that have been integral to the derivation, focus, and development of PCS, is a valuable process for all concerned.


For this reason, part of role of journal club each semester (realistically 1-2 times per semester) will be to deliberate over the status and influence of specific works as potential PCS Prisms.  To this end, nominations for PCS Prism status will be submitted by PCS graduate students, and subsequently considered by the entire PCS community.  Books, edited books, book chapters, and journal articles will all be considered for nomination.  Nominations will take the form of 1,000 word essays (justifying the nomination) developed by at least two PCS graduate students, and circulated to PCS faculty and students.  This essay is allied to a brief presentation made during the PCS journal club following the circulation of the nomination essay.  The group will then vote on the nomination, and, if successful, the work will be accepted and acknowledged as a PCS Prism.  


Should the nomination process be successful, the work will be cited on this web page as a PCS Prism, along with the date of nomination, the names of the nominees, and a link to their nomination essays.  The authors of successfully nominated works will also be contacted and informed of their acknowledgement as a PCS Prism  They will also be provided with a suitable (if modest) token of our appreciation for their contribution to our intellectual growth.


List of PCS Prisms


Ingham, A. G. (1985). From public issue to personal trouble: Well-being and the fiscal crisis of the state. Sociology of Sport Journal, 2(1), 43-55.

Samuel Bernstein and Caitlin Brauer successfully nominated Alan Ingham’s journal article in their untitled essay, the second PCS Prism nomination at the University of Maryland.


Ingham, A. G. (1997). Toward a department of physical cultural studies and an end to tribal warfare. In J. Fernandez-Balboa (Ed.), Critical postmodernism in human movement, physical education, and sport (pp. 157-182). Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Alan Ingham’s 1997 book chapter was successfully nominated by Bryan C. Clift and Samuel Clevenger on September 28, 2012, which received a unanimous vote. Their essay titled name? Alan Ingham and Physical Cultural Studies,’ a collaborative piece of equal authorship, marked the third successful nomination of a PCS Prism at the University of Maryland.


Richardson, L. (1994). Writing as a method of inquiry. In N. Denzin & Y. Lincoln (Eds.), Handbook of qualitative research (pp. 516-529). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Nominated by Callie Maddox and Jennifer Sterling, Laurel Richardson’s book chapter was the first successfully nominated PCS Prism at the University of Maryland.


Vertinsky, P. (2009). Mind the Gap (or Mending it): Qualitative Research and Interdisciplinarity in Kinesiology. Quest, 61(1), 39-51.

Following Ingham’s nomination on September 28, 2012, Oliver J. C. Rick and Shaun Edmonds successfully nominated Patricia Vertinsky’s journal article. Their essay tilted ‘Mapping changing contexts and integrated departmental models of Kinesiology’ marked the fourth successful nomination of a PCS Prism at the University of Maryland.