Nicolien van Luijk

Supervisor: Dr. Wendy Frisby
Research Area: Sport Sociology

Without knowing what my specific research area would be, my interest in undertaking critical social science research led me to UBC to work under the supervision of Dr. Wendy Frisby. As soon as I arrived in the city my future research topic became clear; the Olympics, a highly controversial and fascinating phenomenon was coming to town.

My research concentrates on examining the Vancouver Games through a marginalized perspective. As I became aware of the presence of community resistance groups formed to protest against the Games, I felt that this was a perspective that was deserving of critical attention. While community protests have been present at nearly every Games for the last thirty to forty years very little research has noted the presence of them, let alone focused their research on these groups.

For my specific thesis project I have become interested in examining how a community resistance group challenges the dominant ideologies of the Olympics through their use of public space. I’m intrigued as to how the protestors frame the use of public space in relation to the dominant Olympic framing and how they negotiate their way through that space.