More than Just Games: Canada and the 1936 Olympics

By Richard Menkis and Harold Troper

© 2015

Held in Germany, the 1936 Olympic Games sparked international controversy. Should athletes and nations boycott the games to protest the Nazi regime? More Than Just Games is the history of Canada’s involvement in the 1936 Olympics. It is the story of the Canadian Olympic officials and promoters who were convinced that national unity and pride demanded that Canadian athletes compete in the Olympics without regard for politics. It is the story of those Canadian athletes, mostly young and far more focused on sport than politics, who were eager to make family, friends, and country proud of their efforts on Canada’s behalf. And, finally, it is the story of those Canadians who led an unsuccessful campaign to boycott the Olympics and deny Nazi Germany the propaganda coup of serving as an Olympic host.

Written by two noted historians of Canadian Jewish history, Richard Menkis and Harold Troper, More than Just Games brings to life the collision of politics, patriotism, and the passion of sport on the eve of the Second World War.

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Product Details

  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Illustrations: 21
  • Dimensions: 6.1in x 0.8in x 9.0in
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SKU# SP003943

  • PUBLISHED MAY 2015

    From: $22.46

    Regular Price: $29.95

    ISBN 9781442626904
  • PUBLISHED MAY 2015

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    Regular Price: $72.00

    ISBN 9781442649545
  • PUBLISHED MAY 2015

    From: $22.46

    Regular Price: $29.95

Quick Overview

More than Just Games brings to life the collision of politics, patriotism, and the passion of sport on the eve of the Second World War.

More than Just Games: Canada and the 1936 Olympics

By Richard Menkis and Harold Troper

© 2015

Held in Germany, the 1936 Olympic Games sparked international controversy. Should athletes and nations boycott the games to protest the Nazi regime? More Than Just Games is the history of Canada’s involvement in the 1936 Olympics. It is the story of the Canadian Olympic officials and promoters who were convinced that national unity and pride demanded that Canadian athletes compete in the Olympics without regard for politics. It is the story of those Canadian athletes, mostly young and far more focused on sport than politics, who were eager to make family, friends, and country proud of their efforts on Canada’s behalf. And, finally, it is the story of those Canadians who led an unsuccessful campaign to boycott the Olympics and deny Nazi Germany the propaganda coup of serving as an Olympic host.

Written by two noted historians of Canadian Jewish history, Richard Menkis and Harold Troper, More than Just Games brings to life the collision of politics, patriotism, and the passion of sport on the eve of the Second World War.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 320 pages
  • Illustrations: 21
  • Dimensions: 6.1in x 0.8in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    ‘This is a splendid book!’


    Robert K. Barney
    Sport History Review vol 47:01:2016

    ‘It is a compelling story that deserves to be read.’


    James W.St.G. Walker
    The American Historical review vol 121:04:2016

    ‘What Menkis & Troper have presented in their book is refreshing and deeply intriguing study of the diverging political and social interests in Canada in the lead up to the 1936 Nazi Olympic Games… Artfully written and is without a doubt, exceptionally researched.’


    Brad J. Congelio
    Journal of Sport History, vol 43:03:2016

    ‘This book is one of the finest examples of sport history that I’ve read in some time. More than Just Games will be mainstay on the shelves of historians of years to come.’


    MacIntosh Ross
    Olympika: The International Journal of Olympic Studies – vol 24:2015

    ‘Menkis & Troper provide an excellent account of the preparations for the games…. They offer an outstanding examination of the experience of Canadian athletes and teams in both winter and summer Olympics.’


    Chris Mack
    The American Jewish Archives Journal vol 68: 01:2016

    ‘Menkis and Troper, veteran Canadian historians have produced a definitive history of Canada’s role in the 1936 Olympic Games held in Nazi Germany. Their well-researched account covers all aspects of the games…. Highly recommended.’


    J.D. Sarna
    Choice Magazine vol 53:05:2015

    "Co-authors Richard Menkis and Harold Troper are talented writers with a keen eye for detail. More Than Just Games is not merely honest; it is compelling.”


    Holly Cross
    Blacklocks Reporter, June 6, 2015

    “That the scholarship of academics with the credentials of [Richard] Menkis and [Harold] Troper would be impeccable I had no doubt. What I hadn’t anticipated was the immediacy they could evoke with their writing. The amount of detail they provide serves to bring readers into the period leading up to Canada’s decision to send athletes to the Olympic Games in Berlin in 1936, when there could be no doubt as to the Nazis’ actions and intentions. “


    Cynthia Ramsey
    Jewish Independent, Friday, December 4, 2015

    More than Just Games proves that the story of Canada and the 1936 Olympics is a compelling one that needs to be told.”
    Dana Herman, Ph.D., The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives

    More than Just Games is more than just another book about that most controversial of Olympiads, the German Games of 1936.  In exploring for the first time Canada's role in the Garmisch and Berlin festivals, Menkis and Troper remind us why the Olympic Five-Ring Circus is the most problematical, as well as the most intriguing, sports show on earth.  A compelling story, brilliantly told.”


    David Clay Large, Institute of European Studies, University of California Berkeley, and author of 'Nazi Games: The Olympics of 1936'

    “A thoroughly researched, carefully argued, and engrossingly written account of Canada's encounter with the Nazi Olympics. What’s particularly helpful is the way Menkis and Troper place the debates and initiatives within the sport, political, and Jewish communities in the context of the times. We should have done better, but there's no ahistorical condemnation here. It’s very judicious.”


    Bruce Kidd, Principal, University of Toronto Scarborough, and Olympian

    “Menkis and Troper have made an enormously important contribution to Canadian studies with More than Just Games.  This is a very good book, and one whose themes are of considerable interest in the social history of this country.”


    Gerald Tulchinsky, Department of History, Queen's University
  • Author Information

    Richard Menkis is an associate professor in the Departments of History and Classical, Near Eastern, and Religious Studies at the University of British Columbia. He is co-editor with Norman Ravvin of the Canadian Jewish Studies Reader.

    Harold Troper is professor at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. The co-author of None is Too Many: Canada and the Jews (with Irving Abella), his most recent book is The Defining Decade: Identity, Politics, and the Canadian Jewish Community in the 1960s.
  • Table of contents

    1. Sport, Society, and Politics

    2. Press, Preparations, and Protests: January 1933–August 1935

    3. “Moving Heaven and Earth”

    4. “How Lonesome our Position is Becoming”

    5. Preparations and Protests: March–July 1936

    6. Crimson Blazers

    7. Conclusion

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