Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/34399
Non-Japanese sumo wrestlers are common today, but that has not always been the case. For over a thousand years sumo tournaments were exclusively held by Japanese men, and up until the 1960s foreigners were almost unheard of in the professional sumo scene. As the world’s modernization and internationalization accelerated so did foreign interest in the National sport of sumo. Today the sport has spread to over 87 countries which have joined the International Sumo Federation. With an interest in professional sumo in Japan at an all-time low and with fewer wrestlers applying to stables than ever before, viewers of tournaments and media coverage of events has been decreasing, which is closely followed by western originated sports having overtaken sumo in popularity e.g. soccer and baseball. Yet the interest in sumo on an international scale has increased considerably. In which way has this rising internationalization affected the sumo world and the professional sumo world and how is it reflected in modern Japanese society, in what way did the wrestlers coming from overseas experience the sumo culture compared to how it is today? Today the sumo scene is largely dominated by Mongolian wrestlers, how did this come to pass and how has the society of Japan reacted to these changes.
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