The Early History of Olympism in Uruguay (1911-1924): A National-
The University of Tokyo, JAPAN
Final report for
the IOC Olympic Studies Centre
PhD Students Research Grant Programme
Final Revision: April 23, 2018
Table of contents
Executive Summary Abstract Keywords
1. Research Subject and Objectives ------1
2. Literature Review ------3
3. Academic Significance of the Project and its Impact on the Olympic Movement ------6
4. Methodology and Key Sources ------9 4.1. Uruguayan Sources 4.2. YMCA Sources 4.3. IOC Sources
5. Findings and Analysis ------11 5.1. CNEF and its Olympic contacts during the 1910s 5.2. CNEF and the North American YMCA during the 1910s 5.3. 1922 South American Games and the Intense Collaboration between CNEF-YMCA-IOC (1920-1923) 5.4. “Sports for All” as a Catalyst of the IOC-YMCA-CNEF Connections 5.5. Collapse of the IOC-YMCA-CNEF triangle from 1923 5.6. Uruguay’s Participation in the 1924 Paris Olympics and the football-political conflict
6. Possible Further Research Development ------20
7. Publication Plan ------22
8. Bibliography ------23
Research Subject and Objectives This research examines the early history of Olympism in Uruguay beyond the supposed “beginning” of the official constitution of the Uruguayan Olympic Committee in 1923 and the country’s brilliant debut in the 1924 Paris Olympics. Concretely, it analyzes the following two foundational periods of Uruguay’s Olympic history, calling attention to the continuity in change. 1. Uruguay’s contacts with the Olympic Movement during the 1910s 2. IOC-YMCA alliance and its consequences in Uruguay during the 1920s
Existing Literature and Directions for Research Studies on the early history of the Olympic Movement in Latin America have stressed the primary importance of the partnership between the IOC and the North American YMCA, which sought to promote sports and Olympism in peripheral regions. While these works consider the “Olympic explosion” in Latin American nations during the 1920s as a result of the “external” influence of the IOC-YMCA diffusion strategy, little attention is paid to the “internal” intricacy and the even earlier expression of Olympism that existed prior to 1920. As for Uruguay specifically, the only academic inquiry into the Olympism in this period focuses on the football participation in the 1924 Paris Olympics, which was heavily charged with national political struggle. Although it describes one aspect of the Olympic Movement in the exclusively national context, much of the larger global dynamism that gave shape to the early Olympism is ignored. In contrast to these existing studies, which focus on either the global or the national aspect of Uruguayan Olympism’s foundational period, my research proposes to combine the global and the national perspectives by incorporating primary sources from the international institutions involved as well as those relevant to Uruguay’s sports policy, thus reaching a more comprehensive understanding of the early Olympic Movement in Uruguay.
Key Sources As a solid historical investigation, this study bring together a wide range of primary sources related to the IOC, the YMCA, and Uruguay’s national sports policy from respective archives located in Europe, North America, and Uruguay. Core sources include minute books, correspondence, reports, and other administrative documents of each institution. Some published sources, magazines, and newspapers are also consulted.
Finding 1: CNEF and its Olympic contacts during the 1910s The National Committee of Physical Education (CNEF), the governmental institution in charge of all national policy related to sports and physical education founded in 1911, maintained a constant communication with the IOC and Coubertin during the 1910s. These initial contacts include: 1. a failed attempt to
send an official to the 1912 Stockholm Olympics; 2. a letter of the CNEF chairman to Coubertin in 1914 asking for advice on Uruguay’s incipient sports policy; 3. a verbal and informal proposal by a CNEF delegate to host the 1920 Olympic Games in Montevideo. Discussions surrounding these events suggest that the CNEF fully embraced the authority of the IOC and the Olympic Movement as a supreme reference for the elaboration of sports policy as early as the 1910s.
Finding 2: CNEF and the North American YMCA during the 1910s Similarly, the CNEF also established a particularly close connection to the YMCA during the 1910s through its technical director, Jess Hopkins. This was as much a successful result of the expansion strategy of the YMCA as a consequence of the CNEF’s own effort to find a solid framework in which its sports policy should be designed.
Finding 3: Intense Collaboration between CNEF-YMCA-IOC (1920-1923) The IOC-YMCA partnership signed in 1920 and their diffusion strategy encountered in Uruguay an extensive and well-constructed sports policy led by the CNEF, which had already established more or less substantial connection with both the IOC and the YMCA. This resulted in an extraordinary intense collaboration between the IOC, the YMCA, and the CNEF, which mutually recognized each other’s merit and virtue as a promotor of sports culture. The award of the Olympic Cup to the CNEF in 1925 testifies to this harmonious relationship that existed during the early 1920s. This perspective also allows us to regard Uruguay’s Olympic participation in the 1920s not only as a response to the external intervention but as a consequence of the sports policy-making effort that the CNEF had developed since the 1910s.
Finding 4: “Sports for All” as a Catalyst of the IOC-YMCA-CNEF Connections One common objective that united the IOC, the YMCA, and the CNEF was an ideal similar to what we call today “sports for all.” They shared a strong belief that the ultimate goal of large-scale sports competitions was not the formation of a handful of elite athletes, but the diffusion and establishment of healthy sporting habits among the masses. However, it is also possible to perceive slightly different understandings between Coubertin’s “all sports for all people,” YMCA’s “play for everybody,” and the CNEF’s democratic and inclusive sports policy.
Finding 5: Collapse of the IOC-YMCA-CNEF triangle since 1923 However, the triangular relationship between the IOC, the YMCA, and the CNEF was tragically ephemeral. The CNEF lost its initial commitment to the Olympic Movement after 1923 when the IOC member Francisco Ghigliani was kicked out from the CNEF due to a political antagonism. The IOC-YMCA partnership did not last long, because of the sudden death of its architect, Elwood Brown, in 1924, and the reluctance of international sports federations to collaborate with regional
games. Finally, the direct and efficient connection between the CNEF and the YMCA was lost when Hopkins decided to step down from his service in Uruguay because of a financial crisis in 1928.
Contribution to the Understanding of the Olympic Movement 1. Complexity of the Olympism’s globalization process 2. Pivotal role of local actors in the peripheries as an active agent of the Olympic diffusion 3. Historicity of the mass sports promotion as an Olympic value
This research examines the early history of Olympism in Uruguay beyond the alleged “beginning” in 1923. Based on a thorough investigation on primary sources related to the IOC, the YMCA, and the National Committee of Physical Education (CNEF), the governmental institution in charge of all national sports policy in Uruguay, it has revealed that the CNEF, as part of its policy-setting efforts, maintained a constant communication with the Olympic Movement as early as the 1910s. The outcomes of this research also shed light on the important role that Uruguay played in the global enterprise for Olympic diffusion in South America during the early 1920s. In fact, the IOC-YMCA partnership formed in 1920 resulted in Uruguay in an extraordinarily intense collaboration between the IOC, the YMCA, and the CNEF, three institutions that shared a similar ideal of mass sports promotion. The award of the Olympic Cup to the CNEF in 1925 testifies to this harmonious relationship. However, this IOC-YMCA-CNEF triangle tragically collapsed during the latter half of the 1920s.
Olympic expansion, Uruguay, South America, peripheries, local agency, sports policy, sports for all, Coubertin, Baillet-Latour, YMCA
1. Research Subject and Objectives
This research project aims to analyze historically the early development of Olympism in Uruguay during the years around and prior to the first official constitution of the Uruguayan Olympic Committee (COU), highlighting the intricate interactions between the local and international sport authorities. Despite the fact that the COU was formally constituted for the first time in 1923 and the first official delegation was consequently sent to the 1924 Paris Games ―in which the Uruguayan football team was awarded with the gold medal, winning over powerful countries from the Northern Hemisphere―, this well-known achievement obtained by the tiny South American country in the international Olympic field perhaps has rather hidden than revealed the complex nature and the even earlier expressions of Olympism in Uruguay. The goal of this project is twofold. First, this research intends to reconstruct Uruguay's substantial connections to the international Olympic movement during the decade of 1910s. The National Commission of Physical Education (CNEF) of Uruguay, the governmental agency in charge of designing and implementing all the national policies related to sports and physical education, started to keep in frequent and interesting contact with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the Olympic movement soon after its foundation in 1911, including an abortive bid for the 1920 Games. However, these early aspirations of Uruguayan sport officials for the Olympic involvement has remained almost entirely unrecognized. The outcomes of this investigation will not only allow us to trace the beginning of Uruguayan Olympism back in the 1910s, but also shed light on the efforts of local sport and political leaders as an active and crucial actor in the expansion of the Olympic movement. Another aim of this study is to examine in detail the process of so-called Latin American "Olympic explosion" in the 1920s specifically through the case of Uruguay. During this period, Pierre de Coubertin embarked upon an enterprise in tandem with the North American YMCA (hereafter YMCA) to promote Olympism in Latin America, as a result of which many countries, including Uruguay, created National Olympic Committees and sent (in many cases first) official delegations to the 1924 Paris Games. It may well be supposed that this IOC-YMCA partnership had a special connotation in Uruguay, since in no other country in South America did the YMCA penetrate in the governmental sport administration and take root in the local society so successfully as in Uruguay. Regarding this solid link that had already been established between the CNEF and the YMCA, in addition to the CNEF's even earlier interest in Olympic matters, the role of the CNEF in this process should deserve more scholarly attention. In other words, this research proposes to understand the Uruguayan "Olympic explosion" in the 1920s within the national-global framework of the CNEF-IOC-YMCA trilateral dynamics. Three additional points should be noted. First, it is essential to emphasize that these historical episodes from the 1910s and the 1920s should be interpreted as a single continuous process rather than two independent steps, in which Uruguayan political and sport leaders, vis-à-vis the international sport authorities,
strove restlessly and strategically to make their "unknown" country present and visible in the sporting field of the world. One of the features of this research is the proposal of combining relevant primary sources from the Uruguayan CNEF with those from the international organizations, namely the IOC and the YMCA. As an inquiry into the tripartite relationships between the CNEF, the IOC, and (in the case of the 1920s) the YMCA, this research intends to closely and thoroughly examine documents from each one of these three institutions and compare them critically with each other, in order to gain a more comprehensive insight into the early stage of Olympism in the country as well as its dynamism in the global context.
2. Literature Review
In Latin America, despite the notable importance that sports have in the cultural, social and political spheres, academic study of sport history is still considered a rather novel field. It was only since 2000 that a substantial number of articles in specialized academic journals, PhD thesis, monographs, and other professional publications began to appear in this area. However, as for the history of Olympism, part of this vacuum has already been filled thanks to the contribution of Cesar R. Torres, who has conducted researches using a wide range of primary sources on several topics related to the history of Olympism in Latin America and particularly in Argentina. One of his fundamental contributions to the history of Olympism in the region deals with the Latin American "Olympic explosion" in the 1920s. Drawing on documents from the IOC and YMCA archives as well as the local media of different Latin American countries, he succeeds in constructing a convincing argument that an alliance between the IOC and the YMCA played a crucial part in the incorporation of Latin American countries into the global Olympic movement. According to him, in view of the Latin American reluctance to establish National Olympic Committees (NOCs) and to participate actively in the Olympic events, Coubertin decided around 1920 to form a partnership with the YMCA, which had already spread its worldwide network, in order to stretch the Olympic movement into the South American continent. Torres describes how the organization of the first Latin American Games held in Rio de Janeiro in 1922 under the sponsorship of the IOC-YMCA scheme, as well as the South American tours before and after the 1922 Games by two high officials ―the first by the director of the YMCA International Committee Elwood Brown, and the latter by future president of the IOC Henri Baillet-Latour― resulted in a sudden and powerful impulse toward the creation of NOCs and the participation in the Olympic Games afterward of several Latin American countries [Torres 2006b; 2008]. At a glance, this account of the "Olympic explosion" in the 1920s appears to perfectly fit the Uruguayan case. It is known that the visits of Brown and Baillet- Latour at the CNEF sessions and a series of dialogues conveyed with the Uruguayan sport-political leaders there, led to the designation of the central figure of the CNEF Francisco Ghigliani as an IOC member in 1921, and later to the official foundation of the Uruguayan Olympic Committee in 1923. However, despite his sparse use of a few Uruguayan sources, Torres' study does not focus particularly on Uruguay, nor give a detailed account on the development of Olympism in the country. Consequently, he overlooks Uruguay's earlier interest in the Olympic matters before the IOC-YMCA alliance, as well as the firm connection that had already been established between the CNEF and the YMCA, which may have given a twist on the process of "explosion" in the country. Sharing Torres' appropriate assertion that "those official dates [on which National Olympic Committees were founded or recognized by the IOC] obscure 'much' about the internal logics and intricacies of the processes at work in Latin American nations" [Torres 2006b:1089], I would like to pull the origins of Olympism in Uruguay back to the 1910s, regarding it not as a "response" to the external pressure, but as an
expression of the Uruguayan sport officials' own aspiration and strategy for international sport representation.
As for the history of Olympism specifically in Uruguay, on the other hand, "official" accounts simply take 1923 for granted as the starting point of the country's Olympic past, without making further critical investigation and reflection [for example, see "Uruguay and Olympism", Olympic Review, No.137 (March 1979), 168-176]. While almost all the publications on the history of sports in Uruguay ―most of which are journalistic rather than academic― refer to the national football team's "Olympic victories" of 1924 and 1928, few of them touch the questions surrounding the Olympic movement as a whole. The only works worth mentioning here on the topic in question were written by the Uruguayan professor of physical education Arnaldo Gomensoro, who focuses especially on football and the Uruguayan participation in the 1924 Games in Paris. The first Uruguayan Olympic Committee (COU) was created in 1923 and presided over by Francisco Ghigliani, an IOC delegate in Uruguay since 1921 and long-time CNEF member, when he was temporarily separated from the CNEF perhaps due to a political conflict. At this moment, Uruguayan football was divided into two governing bodies: the traditional Asociación Uruguaya de Football (AUF) and the dissident Federación Uruguaya de Football (FUF). This division was to some extent a reflection of a similar football schism in Argentina, but also was rooted in the internal political rivalry; while the AUF was controlled by politicians from Batlle's group (which Ghigliani was part of), the FUF was captained by Batlle's rival Julio María Sosa. In view of this football-political double conflict, according to Gomensoro's account, Ghigliani pursued a series of political manipulations in order to secure the concurrence of the AUF's team to the 1924 Olympic Games and to veto the rival FUF's representation. He was so insistent on the authority of the AUF's side that, when the executive board of the COU voted for the formation of a "combined" team as a conciliatory formula, Ghigliani dissolved the COU he himself had founded. After the Olympic triumph of the AUF's half-national team in Paris, the tension was somehow eased at least in the football ground; however, as a result of this football-political antagonism, the first National Olympic Committee in the country resulted unfortunately short-lived [Gomensoro 2004; 2015]. Apart from a handful of errors of fact found throughout these articles, his narrative still centers on the football conflict in 1924 and mentions the development of Olympism in general up to that moment only scantly. For instance, he claims that two Uruguayans -a fencer and a skater- participated in the 1900 and 1908 Games, but there is no bibliographical evidence that supports this assertion. Partly due to his football-centered focus, he also plays down the role of the CNEF in this incident as subordinate to the interest of the Sosa-FUF side and disregards the intricate efforts that the CNEF made, as the official authority in national sports, for a better representation of the country in Paris beyond the purely political rivalry. Moreover, he fails to recognize the capital importance of the larger continental-global framework of IOC-YMCA alliance that gave shape to the birth of the first Uruguayan Olympic Committee in 1923 (he does not even refer to Torres' work). Even more important, he relies only on published secondary
sources (some of which are of dubious reliability) and very limited and fragmented archival documents from the official publications of the CNEF; he does not consult any materials from the IOC nor YMCA archives, which seem indispensable to give a comprehensive account on the incident around the Uruguayan Olympic participation in 1924 and the country's Olympic history as a whole. As a result, the general tone of his argument is one of accusation against Ghigliani of being authoritarian and egoistic in handling the matter and making "inappropriate" use of sports for his own political ends, while a closer analysis of the CNEF materials allows to assume that he, as a faithful IOC delegate, may well have acted always with the consent of Coubertin and the IOC. It will be revealing therefore to unfold the communications exchanged between Ghigliani and the IOC, which may hopefully lead to a better interpretation of the Uruguayan IOC member's attitude not fully explicable only from the local sources. Indeed, the aforementioned Torres, in another of his articles, also mentions this Uruguayan episode of the football conflict in the 1924 Games, citing just a couple of letters of the Uruguayan Olympic Committee and Ghigliani retrieved from the IOC archives. However, he does so only on the margin of his study about a similar conflict in Argentinian football, and pays little attention to the political intricacies in which the Uruguayan participation in the 1924 Games involved [Torres 2003].
Expanding on these existing literatures, my project endeavors to examine the early history of Olympism in Uruguay from its initial expressions in the 1910s, including Montevideo's unknown and abortive bid for 1920 Games, up to the "Olympic explosion" and the first official participation in the 1924 Games in Paris. In contrast to Torres' and Gomensoro's previous studies, which are primarily based on international and Uruguayan sources respectively, I propose to combine documents from the Uruguayan CNEF, the IOC and the YMCA archives in order to gain a fuller insight into the complexity of the early Uruguayan Olympism, since the multiplicity of actors requires multiple perspectives from which to investigate. I will also highlight the pivotal role that the CNEF as the maximum authority in Uruguayan national sports played throughout this process, which has been dismissed as passive and opportunistic in the previous football-centered descriptions; I will argue that it was around the CNEF's centrality that the internal political backgrounds and the external sport movement introduced by the IOC (and the YMCA) fused into a contested stage of national-global dynamism.
3. Academic Significance of the Project and its Impact on the Olympic Movement
Besides being one of the few serious and detailed academic researches on the history of Olympism in Uruguay, this project intends to contribute to enhancing the understanding of several aspects of the Olympic Movement and the process of its expansion in the peripheral regions. First, refuting the assumption of some Olympic historians who explicitly or implicitly regard the world expansion of Olympism as a simple process of unilateral "diffusion" and "universalization" of Coubertin's sport ideals and institutions from European center to the peripheries, this study tries to present the early stage of Olympism in Uruguay as part of a much more complicated historical conjuncture in which both local and international actors as well as their respective political interests were brought together to form a global and often contested space of dialogues, negotiations, and collaborations. Much along the same line, to unfold Uruguay's significant relations to the Olympic Games before the IOC-YMCA partnership in the 1920s, including the unknown and eventually abortive bid for hosting the 1920 Games contemplated by the Uruguayan officials ―almost a century before the first Olympic Games in South America were finally held in 2016― as well as the peculiar political atmosphere that allowed one of the smallest countries in South America to endeavor such a quixotic proposal, also contribute to recognizing the primordial role of the local actors not as mere passive agents of the international pressure but as, to a certain extent, active protagonists in the global expansion of the Olympism at the beginning of the 20th century. The exceptionally successful performance on the football tournament aside, probably one of the distinguished features of Uruguayan early Olympism is that the country's substantial connections to the IOC and the Olympic Movement were established by way of the CNEF, a state bureaucratic institution in charge of sports. This marks a stark contrast in comparison to the case of neighboring counties like Argentina and Chile, where the first practical Olympic contacts were made through social elites' recreational circles, not necessarily independent but autonomous from the government, such as the Sociedad Sportiva Argentina and the Federación Sportiva Nacional of Chile, whose affluent and influential members from the upper class were often chosen by Coubertin as IOC members. This is as much a proof of the Baron's "aristocratic" inclination in the expansion of the Olympic circle on the world scale as a reflection of the "elitist" nature of sport and its institutionalization in Latin American continent at the beginning of the 20th century. In Uruguay's case, on the other hand, the CNEF was a governmental agency with its concomitant missions, authority, and resources as such, and the first IOC member Francisco Ghigliani was a university graduate, son of immigrants, and young and radical reformist politician of a new generation who was not part of the traditional social elite. It may be possible to hypothesize that this difference marked on early Uruguayan Olympism a relatively clear imprint of democratic and pedagogical orientation rather than that of elitist and recreational one (for this dichotomy observed in the early Olympic history in neighboring Argentina, see [Torres 1998; 2001]). However, the direct involvement
of the national Olympic movement in the governmental institution also resulted in the conversion of Olympism into an arena of heated political struggles. In any case, it seems important to underline the fact that in Latin American context, the Uruguayan Olympism followed a slightly different pattern of ludic diffusion in this regard.
Apart from the contribution specifically to the understanding of Olympic movement and its history, this project addresses several issues of scholarly importance concerning the history, politics, and sports in Uruguay, Latin America, and beyond. First, the outcomes of this project contributes to enriching the knowledge and understanding about the cultural aspect of the Uruguayan political past. In the context of Uruguayan national history, the early 20th-century period has been considered a decisive moment in which the modern political, economic, and social structures, which to some extent characterize the country until today, consolidated under the regime of radical government led by José Batlle y Ordóñez. However, while the political, social, and economic reforms implemented during these years as well as the following transformations in different aspects of the social life have called attention of many national and foreign historians since long before, the cultural policies of batllista administrations, equally reformist, progressive, and full of conflicts, and their political and social consequences remain largely unexplored. To unfold in detail how the Uruguayan political leaders tackled through the CNEF the complicated task of administrating and promoting sports, arguably the most important popular cultural expression in the country, not only reveals one of the overlooked aspects of the political initiatives in Uruguay's most eventful period, but also demonstrates how the country's cultural experiences were deeply intertwined with the political circumstances that surrounded them. Moreover, the early history of Uruguayan Olympism provides a distinguished example of the peculiar spiritual "atmosphere" that predominated in the country under the reformist-minded government captained by Batlle. The fact that Uruguay at the beginning of the 20th century was a "young" nation, which had just gotten stabilized politically and composed mainly of recently-arrived immigrants, also boosted Uruguayans' faith in the possibility of making their country a small but advanced "model country" of the world. In this sense, the "peripheral" status of Uruguay served not as an obstacle in the way of the national development, but as a strong source of optimism for it. In this context, the involvement in Olympic movement implied a viable way not only to "be part of" the European-centered civilization, but also to "be outstanding" in it. In fact, this tiny South American country was able to outperform the European and North American "developed" countries in the sports field, as was demonstrated in the football tournament of the 1924 Paris Olympics, which was an achievement virtually vetoed to the countries of peripheral regions in the geopolitical, economic, diplomatic, or military competitions. In this sense, Uruguay's premature candidature to host the 1920 Olympic Games should also be considered as another proof of the political leaders' enduring desire for cosmopolitan adventures, as well as of the material limitations that constrained it.
From a broader perspective, these insights also allow us to connect the national history of a marginal country ―in geographical, demographical, and economic senses― to the world-wide context of rapid globalization in the early 20th century, of which modern sports and Olympism in particular provide one of the finest illustrations. This project, by proposing to conjugate findings from local Uruguayan sources with a considerable amount of evidence from international institutions, seeks to shed light on the active, spontaneous, and strategic participation of the local actors ―in this case the Uruguayan government, sports officials, and sportsmen― in the globalizing process of Olympic expansion, thus refuting both the diffusionist and dependency paradigms of globalization, which are so conventional in Latin American world view. In other words, while acknowledging the historical weight of the pressure from the institutions in the North such as the IOC and the YMCA in Latin America to a certain extent, my proposal intends to understand it not in terms of "(cultural) imperialism" or "hegemony", but as part of the mutual and constant exchanges of knowledge, strategy, and power with small yet critically influential nation, Uruguay in South America.
4. Methodology and Key Sources
As a solid historical research, this study adopts the conventional tools of the historians, that is, a collection and scrutinizing of relevant primary sources located at different historical archives, in combination with the critical analysis of secondary sources related to the topic. Since this investigation proposes to analyze the triangular interactions among the Uruguayan CNEF, the IOC, and the YMCA, documentary researches at archives containing materials from these three institutions constitute the core of this investigation.
4.1. Uruguayan Sources
As for the documents related to the CNEF of Uruguay, over the course of my previous researches I had collected materials from the Secretaría Nacional de Deportes (National Secretary of Sports), the Archivo General de la Nación (National Archive), the Biblioteca del Palacio Legislativo (Library of the Congress), and the Biblioteca Nacional (National Library) that include minute books and official bulletin of the CNEF, documents elevated from the CNEF to the Ministry of Education, minutes of the Legislature, as well as some newspaper and magazine sources from early 20th century period. Additionally, in August 2017 I had an opportunity to stay in Montevideo again, which enabled me to develop further research at several smaller archives such as the Archivo Histórico- Diplomático (Historical-Diplomatic Archive), the Archivo Histórico Metodista del Uruguay (Methodist Historic Archive of Uruguay), and the Museo Histórico Nacional (National Historical Museum), in addition to the institutions already mentioned above. These documents, digitally photographed and recorded in the electronic format, allow me to examine the political-sport dynamism surrounding the Uruguay's early Olympism from the Uruguayan national perspective.
4.2. YMCA Sources
To complete the research proposed in the application, it was necessary to carry out intensive and thorough archival works on documents from the relevant international institutions, namely, the IOC and the YMCA. As to the latter, most of the historical records regarding the North American YMCA can be found at the Kautz Family YMCA Archives located at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, U.S.A. From January to February 2017, I conducted a research in this archive for three weeks, during which I was able to examine a wide range of sources related to the YMCA’s involvement in the global diffusion of the Olympic Movement during the 1920s as well as the YMCA movement in Uruguay and South America in general. Among the collections consulted there, the most crucial to this study were “Records of YMCA International Work in Latin America” (comprising eight boxes) and “Records of YMCA International Work in Uruguay” (five boxes). Both collections contain a number of letters, correspondence, reports, and
administrative documents regarding the North American YMCA’s activities in Uruguay and South America as well as the internal administration of the YMCA Montevideo. Many of these materials speak to the origin, objectives, development, and consequences of the IOC-YMCA alliance during the 1920s as well as Uruguay’s peculiar position within this global dynamism. Also, collections of neighboring countries and some biographical materials provided me with supplementary information relevant to this research.
4.3. IOC Sources
With regard to the IOC, on the other hand, I stayed at the Olympic Studies Centre in Lausanne, Switzerland for four weeks in September 2017 to carry out a research on different collections related to Uruguay and its connections to the IOC during the 1910s and 1920s. The country file compiled under the title “NOC Uruguay” includes correspondence between the IOC, the CNEF and the first IOC member Francisco Ghigliani during the first three decades of the twentieth century. The archive related to the creation of regional games in Central and Latin America, which comprises five folders, provides extremely rich and valuable information regarding the intricate communications between many actors (the IOC, the YMCA, local sports authorities such as the CNEF, and a number of individuals involved in these institutions) surrounding the early development of Olympism in the region. The personal archives of Pierre de Coubertin and Henri Baillet-Latour, the first two presidents of the IOC, contain a handful of letters relevant to Uruguay’s early history of Olympism. Moreover, materials from the Olympic Games and the IOC Sessions during the period under study also make sporadic but important references to Uruguayan situation.
Findings and insights gained from the Uruguayan, the IOC, and the YMCA archives has been analyzed from critical and historical viewpoints, in order to obtain a more comprehensive and adequate view of the early development of Olympism in Uruguay. A complete list of primary sources consulted in the course of this research is found in “Bibliography” section at the end of this report.
5. Findings and Analysis
As a result of this historical exploration, it is pertinent to highlight several findings surrounding the early history of Olympism in Uruguay, which are also relevant to the broader theme of the globalization of the Olympic Movement in the early twentieth century.
5.1. CNEF and its Olympic contacts during the 1910s
Refuting the widely accepted assumption that “much importance was not given [to the Olympic Movement] by Uruguayan authorities and athletes”1 during the 1910s, a thorough analysis of primary sources during this research has revealed that Uruguay’s sports policy, which was launched in 1911 with the creation of the Comisión Nacional de Educación Física [National Committee of Physical Education, hereafter CNEF], always regarded the IOC and Olympism as an important source of reference and authority in the promotion of sports, and Uruguay tried to establish a certain connection with the Olympic Movement during the 1910s, although it was not able to send an official delegation to the Olympic Games during this period.
At the beginning of the twentieth century, Uruguay definitely left behind the post-independence disorder fueled by continual armed conflict between two political parties, the Colorado and the Blanco (or National), and transformed into one of the most progressive democracies in the region. This comprehensive reform was engineered by a radical group from the Colorado Party, captained by José Batlle y Ordóñez. Batlle and his allies promoted a series of reforms that included the substitution of the president with a council of plural members, 2 establishment of a fair and democratic electoral system, strict separation of church and state, implementation of eight-hour working days, and state intervention in different areas of industry and infrastructure that provided Uruguayan citizens with a wide range of social services and led the way to the country’s industrialization. Among these reformist measures taken by batllista Uruguay was the creation of the CNEF, a governmental institution that undertook the promotion of sports and physical education. Established in 1911, the CNEF was made up of seven members designated by the executive as well as the chairs of four related public institutions. These eleven members gathered once a week to discuss and implement any national policy related to sports and physical education.
1 Arnaldo Gomensoro, “El borrascoso nacimiento del Comité Olímpico Uruguayo,” ISEF Digital 2 (2004): 3 2 This reform was carried out only partially after a hard-fought debate. In 1919, the new constitution established that the president controlled only the diplomacy, the police and the army, while a nine-member collegiate executive branch called the National Council of Administration (Consejo Nacional de Administración) was in charge of all the other governmental functions. 11
Particularly from 1915 to 1923, the CNEF developed into a genuinely national institution that orchestrated the diffusion and promotion of diverse physical activities throughout the country. While many of the CNEF members during this period were batllista political appointees, Francisco Ghigliani, a young physician and one of Batlle’s right-hand men, was an indisputably central figure. Under Ghigliani’s strong leadership, the CNEF developed a series of progressive sports policy that included: the construction of public playgrounds or plazas de deportes; the professional training of physical education teachers; and the creation and supervision of many national sports federations.
It was in the foundational period of Uruguay’s sports policy that the CNEF most eagerly sought to build a solid link with the global Olympic Movement. The CNEF’s first contact with the Olympism was contemplated in May 1912, when CNEF member José Zamora proposed to send an officer to the Olympic Games to be held in Stockholm that year. The purpose of sending a national delegation was not to compete on the field, but to learn how to organize a massive sporting event that could be implemented in Uruguay as part of the CNEF’s incipient sports policy. However, due to lack of time and other bureaucratic reasons, this project was voted down. A more substantial contact to Olympism was made in January 1914. The chairman of the CNEF, Juan Smith, sent to Coubertin a booklet entitled Stadium Nacional de Montevideo (Montevideo National Stadium), which described a blueprint for a stadium to be constructed in Montevideo as well as a detailed project of sports competitions that the CNEF proposed to hold regularly there. Apparently, Smith hoped that the founder of the modern Olympic Games would provide a valuable advice on the planned sports events and other projects that Uruguayan sports officials had in mind. However, Coubertin’s response was furious; what irritated his nerves was the denomination of the sports events to be held in the National Stadium as Juegos Olímpicos (Olympic Games), a label that he carefully reserved for the “true” Olympic Movement he presided over. Embarrassed by Coubertin’s unexpected indignation about the “usurpation of name,” Smith sent a letter of apology with José Destombes, who participated in the 1914 Paris Olympic Congress. While this was the first time that Uruguay made an appearance at an official Olympic event, the IOC documents related to the Paris Congress tell little about the Uruguayan envoy’s role there. At the end of the 1910s, the Uruguayans’ ambitions for Olympic involvement soared high up to an unprecedented height. Ángel Colombo, who was entrusted by the CNEF to undertake a research on the physical education in France and Italy, interviewed Coubertin in Paris. According to the report Colombo presented to the CNEF in February 1918, Coubertin proposed the organization of a South American International Olympic Committee in order to strengthen the ties between the IOC and South American countries. The Uruguayan Minister in Paris, Juan Carlos Blanco, even confirmed in a separate letter that the IOC president had “accepted, in principle, the suggestion that the Olympic Games of 1920— analogous to the ones held in Athens and Stockholm—be held in Montevideo.” While the historical circumstances in which Europe was being devastated by the World War I suggest the IOC president’s possible seriousness in bringing the
1920 Olympics to South America, none of the sources consulted at the IOC Archives or Coubertin’s writings refer to this Uruguayan bit. It appears that the bid was only verbal, and the CNEF, unable to secure financial backup from the government, gave up the idea of hosting the Olympic Games in Uruguay. These early contacts with the Olympic Movement denote the CNEF’s high aspiration, admittedly Eurocentric in nature, to bring up the country’s sports culture to European standards. These continuous efforts certainly paved the way for Uruguay’s “Olympic explosion” in the 1920s.
5.2. CNEF and the North American YMCA during the 1910s
Although not directly related to Olympism, it is worth highlighting here the peculiar connection that the CNEF established with the North American YMCA during the 1910s, since it constitutes an important antecedent of the “Olympic explosion” in Uruguay in the early 1920s. The beginning of the YMCA movement in Uruguay was as much a result of the overseas missionary enterprise of the International Committee, the governing body of the YMCAs in the United States and Canada, as of Uruguayan Protestants’ own effort to promote social and cultural activities among the youth. When the International Committee sent Philip Conard to Montevideo in 1908, Eduardo Monteverde and other influential Protestants had established the Club Protestante, which shared the ideal of youth development based on the religious principles. After a negotiation with Conard, the leaders of the Club Protestante agreed to change its name to Asociación Cristiana de Jóvenes, thus bringing about the official foundation of the YMCA Montevideo in 1908. Since sports and physical education were among the YMCA’s areas of specialization, the creation of the CNEF in 1911 opened a new opportunity for the leaders of the YMCA Montevideo to expand their influence. Their successful lobbying resulted in the appointment of the president of the YMCA Montevideo, Pedro Towers, as one of the founding members of the CNEF. The following year, the International Committee selected Jess Hopkins, an Iowa-born graduate of Springfield College, as the physical director to be sent to Montevideo. It was not long before Hopkins’ profound knowledge of physical education, unrivalled in the country, was recognized by the government. He was “loaned” to the CNEF as the director of the first plaza de deportes and later as the technical director of the CNEF, a position from which he supervised the technical aspects of Uruguay’s sports policy.
5.3. 1922 South American Games and the Intense Collaboration between CNEF- YMCA-IOC (1920-1923)
The CNEF already established more or less substantial connections with the IOC and the YMCA during the 1910s as part of its sports policy-making efforts.
From Uruguay’s own perspective, the country’s Olympic participation in the 1920s was as much a natural consequence of these antecedents as a response to the external influence of the IOC-YMCA partnership. In fact, the “Olympic explosion,” which occurred surrounding the South American Games in 1922 in Rio de Janeiro, appeared in Uruguay as an extraordinarily intense and fruitful collaboration between the CNEF, the YMCA, and the IOC in the early 1920s. In 1919, Hopkins wrote a letter to New York enthusiastically expressing his desire to attend the upcoming 1920 Olympics. His ambition was motivated not only by his personal interest but also by the global conjuncture: during this year, IOC president Coubertin and the physical director of the YMCA International Committee, Elwood Brown, were exchanging an intense communication to settle a scheme in which the two institutions would cooperate with each other to spread their common goals. The basic proposal was to make use of the YMCA’s worldwide network to organize, under official recognition of the IOC, several regional sports competitions, analogous to the Far Eastern Games that Brown had founded in 1913 when he was the physical director of the YMCA Manila. Hopkins’ hope to include South America in this proposed scheme soon came true when Brown decided to tour around South America in 1920. Brown, accompanied by Hopkins, visited Peru, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil and interviewed a number of governmental and sports authorities to invite them to participate in the first South American Games, projected to take place in 1922 in Brazil, as well as to form a continental governing body that would organize the South American Games in collaboration with the IOC. Upon his arrival in Uruguay, Brown was introduced at a CNEF session on May 6. He expressed that he as well as Coubertin wished each South American country to have a national institution representing all sports, which would act as each country’s intermediaries before the IOC. Ghigliani responded that if “the IOC wants to treat with one body for each country, the CNEF would be able to serve as an intermediary,” but “this is not entirely correct because the IOC wants to treat with institutions representative of the sports, and this is not the case of the CNEF in which the sports associations do not have representation.” He mentioned that he could present a bill in the Chamber of Deputies, of which he was a member, modifying the law to nominate some representatives of sports federations as CNEF members to ensure that the CNEF would have a representative character. “Otherwise,” he continued, “it would be necessary to embark on the constitution of a National Olympic Committee.” Satisfied with this explanation, Brown asked for the CNEF’s opinion as to the most appropriate person in Uruguay to be an IOC delagate. Everybody present agreed that it was Ghigliani, the driving spirit of the national sports policy. In 1921 at the Lausanne IOC Session, he was officially designated as an IOC member. The IOC-YMCA partnership was officially endorsed at the 1920 IOC Session in Antwerp. Brown and Hopkins set out to organize the 1922 South American Games in Rio de Janeiro. However, the preparation of this event was plagued by difficulties, one of the principal problems being an economic crisis that was severely affecting Brazil. Throughout 1921 and early 1922, Brown, Hopkins, and Brazilian sports officials maintained an intense communication, while little moved forward. Hopkins proposed more than once to hold the first South
American Games more decently in Montevideo in the following year. In May 1922, Hopkins finally assured the CNEF that the event was definitely going to take place. In August, the CNEF approved a national delegation to be sent to Rio de Janeiro consisting of sixty-three athletes and six staff members for track and field, boxing, fencing, shooting, basketball, and rowing. In September 1922, the first regional competition under the IOC-YMCA partnership was held in Rio de Janeiro. Although the event itself was as troublesome as its preparation, Uruguayan sport officials embraced the noble cause of the regional “Olympics.” In October 1922, Henri Baillet-Latour, who represented the IOC at the South American Games in place of Coubertin, visited Montevideo, where he started his Latin American tour that lasted more than six months. When invited to a CNEF session, Baillet-Latour lauded the CNEF’s “indefatigable and efficient work” that had brought about the “considerable advance . . . in comparison with the other countries, in matters of physical education,” which he was able to verify during his short stay in Montevideo. Upon his return to Europe, Baillet-Latour presented a report on his Latin American mission at the IOC Session held in Rome, where he confidently declared: “I dare to say that the physical education in Uruguay … surpasses that of almost all the countries of the world.” Referring to the plazas de deportes, he praised the CNEF’s plan “to have someday one playground in every town.” Baillet-Latour even recommended the CNEF to be a candidate for the Coupe Olympique (Olympic Cup), a prize awarded by the IOC every year in recognition of institutions that contributed to the development of sports and Olympism around the world. This supreme honor was ultimately bestowed in 1925, in the wake of Uruguay’s football triumph at the 1924 Paris Olympics.
5.4. “Sports for All” as a Catalyst of the IOC-YMCA-CNEF Connections
For the IOC-YMCA partnership in 1920 and their strategical efforts to promote sports and Olympism, Uruguay emerged as an extraordinary favorable terrain: the CNEF, architect of the progressive sports policy, already embraced the authority of the IOC and maintained an especially close connection to the YMCA during the 1910. This peculiar situation brought about an intense and harmonious communication between the IOC, the YMCA, and the CNEF, which ultimately resulted in Baillet-Latour’s appraisal of Uruguay’s sports policy at the heart of the Olympic Movement in 1923 and the award of the Olympic Cup to the CNEF. One interesting aspect that the Uruguayan experience reveals is the existence of a prototype of the ideal known today as “sports for all” as a catalyst of these connections between the IOC, the YMCA, and the CNEF. These three institutions shared a strong belief that the ultimate goal of large-scale sports competitions was not the formation of a handful of elite athletes, but the diffusion and establishment of healthy sporting habits among the masses, thus contributing to raising the physical and moral standards of all citizens. The magnificent performance of elite athletes in the Olympic arenas was meaningful
as long as it emerged as a consequence of the development of a wider sporting culture. If Coubertin summarized this principle in 1919 as “all sports for all people,”3 the YMCA had “play for everybody” as an emblem of its global strategy for sports diffusion. These mottos, which Brown repeatedly claimed to be identical to each other, were fully embraced by the CNEF, whose policy was oriented toward the formation of a democratic, participative, and inclusive sporting culture since its foundation in 1911. This tendency was best exemplified in the plazas de deportes project, which was judged by Baillet-Latour as one of the most significant contributions to the world’s sports culture. In this sense, in contrast to what happened in other South American nations, the CNEF’s status as a governmental agency created by the democratic welfare-oriented regime facilitated the embracement of this sporting ideal and contributed to Uruguay’s successful incorporation into the Olympic Movement. Yet, a closer look also indicates the different understandings about the development of popular sports. While today’s “sports for all” movement stresses the need to guarantee the access to sports as a fundamental right for everybody,4 none of the early twentieth-century sports promotors understood the mass sports promotion in terms of human rights. When Coubertin advocated “all sports for all people” in 1919, his idea was strongly framed by the nineteenth-century European class division; for the YMCA, the promotion of physical activities among the mass in different parts of the world was, to an arguable degree, part of its global “civilizing mission,” which was also in line with the United States’ imperialist aspiration during the early twentieth century. The CNEF, on the other hand, implemented a series of sports policy aimed at popular sectors as a means to improve public health, promote social justice, and consolidate an inclusive nationhood for all the Uruguayan citizens.
5.5. Collapse of the IOC-YMCA-CNEF triangle from 1923
However, the IOC-YMCA-CNEF triangle was tragically ephemeral. The first rupture came between the IOC and the CNEF. Since 1919, the appointment of CNEF members was in the hands of the National Council of Administration, a plural executive branch composed of nine members that took up most of the functions that the president had assumed before. This Council turned into a highly contested stage of intricate political maneuvers. Particularly significant were the deepening splits within the Colorado Party between the batllistas and other more moderate sectors. In August 1923, the Nationalist and the non-batllista Colorado councilors voted for the replacement of all the appointed members of the CNEF, unquestionably in an attempt to kick Ghigliani and other batllistas out from the nucleus of national sports policy. Removed from the CNEF, Ghigliani founded the COU in October. This was
3 Pierre de Coubertin, “Letter to the Members of the International Olympic Committee,” in Olympism: Selected Writings, 739, 740. 4 See, for example, UNESCO’s “International Charter of Physical Education, Physical Activity and Sport” adopted in 1978. 16
as much a legitimate exercise of his authority endorsed by the IOC as a tactical measure to counteract the CNEF, which was now controlled by his political rivals. A conflict emerged between the CNEF and the COU with regard to the participation in the 1924 Paris Olympics, particularly concerning football, which had split up by then, at least partly, on the same political antagonism. This conflict eventually led to the polemical dissolution of the COU by the decision of Ghigliani himself. Kept away from sports policy-making and increasingly bothered by day- to-day political struggles, it is reasonable to assume that during the latter half of the 1920s Ghigliani lost his initial interest in Olympic matters, although he remained an IOC member until his death in 1936. The IOC-YMCA partnership did not last long either. The unexpected death of Elwood Brown in 1924 considerably damaged the fluid and productive cooperation. The idea of organizing regional games across the world, the core of the alliance scheme, did not flourish. Despite Hopkins’ attempts to continue the effort of his late friend in the mid-1920s, the second South American Games never came into being. Finally, the last piece of the triangle collapsed in 1928 when Hopkins decided to step down from his sixteen year-long work in South America. During the 1920s, the YMCA’s International Committee suffered from a serious financial deficit. This situation compelled Hopkins to withdraw, in order to avoid a financial crisis, since he recognized the high cost of retaining him, his wife, and their seven children in Uruguay.
5.6. Uruguay’s Participation in the 1924 Paris Olympics and the football-political conflict
While the CNEF gradually lost its initial strong commitment to Olympism from 1923 on due to both national and international circumstances, as for Uruguay’s first official Olympic participation in the 1924 Paris Games and the sports-political polemics that the selection of the national football team involved specifically, the research undertaken throughout this year has not been able to reach a definitive conclusion. This is primarily due to the insufficiency of football- specific primary sources, that is, those from the archives of the FIFA and the AUF, which, in the course of this research, proved to be crucial to a complete understanding of the topic in question. Yet, on the ground of the sources consulted in this research, I have already been able to overcome some of the shortcomings of the existing literature and establish a basis from which to continue further investigation. First, Gomensoro’s simple portrait of Ghigliani as an egoist who, confusing sports with politics, pursued the representation of the squad of the AUF, association of his political allies, and tried to veto the participation of his rival’s FUF, should be more nuanced. As is mentioned above, Ghigliani was not the first to politicize sports: he had been removed from the CNEF by his political opponents for apparently unfair reasons. It is even reasonable to hypothesize that in 1923 the rival of the core batllistas Sosa took over the control of the CNEF,
the supreme authority in Uruguay’s national sports, for the equally selfish purpose of making his own FUF present in Paris, in spite of its status as a dissident without any international affiliation. Ghigliani’s insistency in making the AUF representation into the Olympic delegation was more than evident, and his decision to dissolve the Uruguayan Olympic Committee [Comité Olímpico Uruguayo, COU], who went against his own will and voted for giving up Uruguay’s participation in the Olympic football tournament when the idea of a “combined” team proved impossible, seems difficult to be justified. However, sources consulted in this research reveal that he did so only after carefully taking counsel from both the FIFA and the Organizing Committee of the Paris Olympics, which apparently gave him different advices regarding the selection of the national team to be sent to the Paris Olympics. Upon consultation regarding the project of a “combined” national team, the FIFA suggested that the national delegation should be made up only of those players affiliated to the association officially recognized by the FIFA, that is, the AUF. The French organizers of the 1924 Games, on the other hand, initially advised Ghigliani that the COU, as the supreme representative of the Olympic Movement in the country, was legitimately allowed to select a national team at its own will regardless of the FIFA’s indication, thus authorizing the formation of a “combined” team. Puzzled by two contradictory answers, Ghigliani asked the General Secretary of the French Organizing Committee Franz Reichel to seek advice from the IOC. This “conflict of authority” that was taking place far away in South America called serious attention of Coubertin and Baillet-Latour, who, nonetheless, were hardly informed of the local political intricacy involved, because this incident posed a much larger question surrounding the early stage of the development of the Olympic Movement: the difficult and sometimes conflictive construction of the relationship with international federations (IFs) such as, in this case, the FIFA. Gordon H. MacDonald argues that it was during the 1920s that the IOC started to formalize its relationship with the IFs in view of the growing pressure from them who demanded their interest and authority be represented in the Olympic Movement. As the IFs’ lobbying intensified since the early 1920s, the IOC agreed to hold regular meetings with the IFs in 1925, thus giving them the first major concession. One of the nexus of a controversy between the IOC and the IFs (particularly the FIFA) was the question of which organization should be responsible for determining the amateur status and, hence, deciding who would be eligible to participate in the Olympic Games. If, from the Uruguayan point of view, the football participation in the 1924 Paris Olympics was heavily stained with the local football-political antagonism, it can also be examined as one chapter of this larger global sports controversy that was being unfolded at that time. In other words, at least four conflicts at different levels were simultaneously at play around this incident: 1. a division of the Uruguayan football between the AUF and the FUF; 2. a conflict over the control of the CNEF between the old and the newly-appointed members; 3. Uruguay’s peculiarly complex party politics that set the tone of these struggles; 4. a conflict between the IOC and the FIFA regarding the authorization of participants in the Olympic Games. Hence, to gain a fuller understanding of the historical meanings
of this event, it is relevant to analyze it from each of these dimensions, bringing together sources from both Uruguayan and international organizations.
6. Possible Further Research Development
Recognizing these shortcomings leads to an opportunity for further investigation that I am willing to undertake in the continuation of this research. As a historical inquiry into both the initial stage of Olympism and the early twentieth- century Uruguayan politics, it will definitely be important to consult additional primary sources such as those from the AUF and the FIFA, and reach a more complete panorama of the sports-political controversies surrounding Uruguay’s participation in the 1924 Olympic football tournament, combining the four different level of conflict mentioned above. Since virtually no other researcher has studied specifically about the history of Olympism in Uruguay on a solid documental and bibliographical basis, it is also necessary to continue research on the years after 1924. As briefly mentioned above, Ghigliani’s escalating political duties as a deputy and batllista spokesman seems to have sacrificed his Olympic commitment from the mid-1920s. Before the 1924 Olympics, Baillet-Latour, Hopkins, and probably Coubertin also, wrote to Ghigliani strongly urging him to go to Paris and familiarize himself with the Olympic circles as a recently-appointed IOC member. Ghigliani also made a desperate effort to make his travel to Paris come true, but the important elections that took place that year impeded him from leaving the country. At the meeting of South American representatives in Paris, Ghigliani was entrusted to organize a sub-continental gathering together with the Argentinian IOC member Ricardo Aldao. However, apparently he was reluctant to take up this task. While he re- founded the COU in 1927, the role of this committee was far from clear, as it did not organize a national delegation to the 1928 and 1932 Games, nor did so the CNEF. The last correspondence from Ghigliani that I was able to retrieve at the OSC Archive is a short telegram in which he designated the representative of the AUF Enrique Buero to act on behalf of him at the South American meeting to be held in Amsterdam in 1928. This ineffectiveness of a practical Olympic representation in Uruguay appears to have been normalized only after the death of Ghigliani in 1936, when the IOC appointed Joaquín Serratosa Cibils as a succeeding member in Uruguay and he founded a permanent and stable COU. In order to write an extended history of Olympism in Uruguay, it is pertinent to examine the change and continuity before and after the perceived threshold in 1936 on the basis of a primary-source research. Another possibility of extending this research is to open up the analytical horizon by making comparative analysis with the cases of other South American nations and, possibly, countries of other peripheral regions like East Asia. The outcomes of this research suggest that a distinctive feature of the Uruguayan case lies in the fact that the country’s first contact with the Olympic Movement was made through the CNEF, a governmental institution that had embraced a sort of the “sports for all” orientation that the Olympic diffusion strategy envisioned by the IOC-YMCA partnership was aimed at. To strengthen even further this argument, it will be relevant to make a comparison with the cases of neighboring countries. While several scholars have already undertaken important researches on Argentina and Brazil, little has been studied about the cases of other countries such as Chile and Peru, which also experienced the “Olympic explosion” process
during the 1920s. It will also be interesting to incorporate the cases of other peripheral regions where the IOC-YMCA partnership operated, in order to highlight the peculiarity and commonality of Uruguay in the light of a genuinely “global” dynamism.
7. Publication Plan
A partial and preliminary result of this research will be published in 2018 as a chapter of The Olympic Movement in the Making of Latin America and the Caribbean (The University of Arkansas Press), an anthology on the Olympic history in Latin America and the Caribbean edited by Cesar R. Torres and Antonio Sotomayor. My chapter entitled “Sports Policy, the YMCA, and the Early History of Olympism in Uruguay (1911-1923)” focuses on Uruguay’s earliest connection with the Olympic Movement during the 1910s as well as how the “Olympic explosion,” triggered by the 1920 IOC-YMCA partnership, operated in Uruguay. This article also addresses briefly the way in which the intense and harmonious triangular relationships between the IOC, the YMCA, and the CNEF, which reached its height in 1923 when Baillet-Latour lauded Uruguay’s sports policy at the Olympic Congress and nominated the CNEF as a candidate to the Coupe Olympique, suddenly and tragically collapsed during the last half of the 1920s. A more complete discussion resulting from this research will be the core of the Part II of my PhD dissertation tentatively entitled “Deporte y estado en el Uruguay batllista: una historia política en perspectiva nacional-global (1911- 1933)” [“Sports and the State in batllista Uruguay: A Political History from a Nacional-Global Perspective (1911-1933)], which I expect to submit in 2019 at the Department of Area Studies, The University of Tokyo.
8.1. List of Primary Sources consulted
◆ International Olympic Committee Archives. Olympic Studies Centre, Lausanne, Switzerland. -Fonds “1924 Paris Olympics” -Fonds “1928 Amsterdam Olympics” -Fonds “1932 Los Angeles Olympics” -Fonds “Henri de Baillet-Latour” -Fonds “Latin American Games” -Fonds “Pierre de Coubertin” -Fonds “Procés-Verbaux, Session du Comité International Olympique,” 1914- 1925. -Fonds “NOC Uruguay” -Fonds “YMCA”
◆ Kautz Family YMCA Archives. The University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, USA. -Collection “Administrative Records” -Collection “Biographical Records” -Collection “Country File: Latin America” -Collection “Country File: Uruguay” -Fonds “Personal Papers: John R. Mott” -Fonds “Personal Papers: Philip A. Conard”
◆ Uruguayan Sources (All are from Montevideo, Uruguay) -Actas de la Comisión Nacional de Educación Física, 1911-1933. Secretaría Nacional de Deportes. [Minute books of the National Commission of Physical Education] -Diario de Sesiones de la Cámara de Representantes, 1911-1933. [Congressional Record, Chamber of Deputies] -Diario de Sesiones de la Cámara de Senadores, 1911-1933. [Congressional Record, Senate] -Fondo Ministerio de Instrucción Pública, 1911-1933. Archivo General de la Nación. [Collection of the Ministry of Public Instruction, General Archive of the Nation] -La Reforma. 1908-1909. Archivo de la Iglesia Metodista. [Methodist Church Archive] -Uruguay-Sport. 1918-1926. [Official Bulletin of the CNEF]
8.2. List of Secondary Sources consulted
Blanco, Raúl. 1948. Educación física: un panorama de su historia. Montevideo: Impresora Adroher Editora. Buero, Enrique. 1932. Negociaciones Internacionales. Brussel: N/A.
Caetano, Gerardo, (dir.). 2000. Los uruguayos del Centenario: Nación, ciudadanía, religión y educación (1910-1930). Montevideo: Taurus. Coubertin, Pierre de. 1997. Olympic Memoirs. Lausanne: International Olympic Committee. DaCosta, Lamartine. 2002. Olympic Studies: Current Intellectual Crossroads. Rio de Janeiro: Editora Gama Filho. ------. 2002. "The IOC Geopolitics in South America, 1896-1936". Journal of Olympic History, Vol.10, No.3, 61-67. Dogliotti, Paola. 2015. Educación del cuerpo y discursividades en torno a la formación en educación física en Uruguay (1874-1948). Montevideo: Ediciones Universitarias. Federación Sudamericana de Asociaciones Cristianas de Jóvenes. 1927. Quince Años de Educacíón Física en las Asociaciones de América del Sur. Montevideo and Buenos Aires: Editorial Mundo Nuevo. Gomensoro, Arnaldo. 2004. "El borrascoso nacimiento del Comité Olímpico Uruguayo". ISEF Digital. Vol.2, 1-17. ------. 2015. "El Uruguay y el Olimpismo. El borrascoso nacimiento del Comité Olímpico Uruguayo". In Historia del deporte, la recreación y la educación física en Uruguay: crónicas y relatos. Edited by A. Gomensoro. Montevideo: IUACJ, pp.83-92. Guttmann, Allen. 1992. The Olympics: A History of the Modern Games. Urbana: University of Illinois Press. Guedes, Claudia. 2011. "‘Changing the cultural landscape’: English engineers, American missionaries, and the YMCA bring sports to Brazil - the 1870s to the 1930s". The International Journal of the History of Sport, Vol.28, No.17, 2594-2608. Hopkins, Jess. 1918. "A Monograph on Physical Education Written in Spanish". Graduation Thesis, International Young Men's Christian Association College, Springfield, Massachusetts. International Olympic Committee. 1994. The International Olympic Committee – One Hundred Years: The Idea, The Presidents, The Achievements, Vol.1. Lausanne: International Olympic Committee. Kraemer-Mandeau, Wolf. 1997. "National and International Olympic Movements in Latin America". In Comtemporary Studies in the National Olympic Games Movement, edited by Roland Naul. Frankfurt: Peter Lang, 179-204.. MacAloon, John. 1981. This Great Symbol: Pierre de Coubertin and the Origins of the Modern Olympic Games. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press. MacDonald, Gordon M. 1998. “Regime Creation, Maintenance, and Change: A History of Relations between the International Olympic Committee and International Sports Federations 1894- 1968.” PhD Dissertation, The University of Western Ontario. Malaia Santos, João Manuel C. and Victor Andrade de Melo (org.). 2012. 1922: Celebrações esportivas do Centanário. Rio de Janeiro: Viveiros de Castro Editora. Morales, Andrés. 2013. Fútbol, identidad y poder 1916-1930. Montevideo: Fin de Siglo. Müller, Norbert (ed.). 2000. Pierre de Coubertin 1863-1937 - Olympism: Selected
Writings. Lausanne: International Olympic Committee. ------and Ralf Tuttas. 2002. "The Role of the YMCA: Especially that of Elwood S. Brown, Secretary of Physical Education of the YMCA, in the World-wide Expansion of the Olympic Movement during Pierre de Coubertin's Presidency". In Bridging Three Centuries: Intellectual Crossroads and the Modern Olympic Movement. Edited by Kevin B. Wamsley, Scott G. Martyn, Gordon H. MacDonald, and Robert Barney. London, Ontario: University of Western Ontario Press. Rubio, Katia. 2010. "Postulações brasileiras aos Jogos Olímpicos: Considerações acerca da Lenda do distanciamento entre política e Movimento Olímpico". Revista Bibliográfica de Geografía y Ciencias Sociales, Vol.15, No.10. http://www.ub.es/geocrit/b3w-895/b3w-895-10.htm (accessed September 26, 2016). Silva dos Santos, Doiara. 2015. "Avery Brundage, Pan-American Games, and Entrenchment of the Olympic Movement in Latin America". PhD Dissertation, The School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, Western University, London, Ontario. Torres, Cesar R. 1998. "Mass Sport Through Education or Elite Olympic Sport? José Benjamín Zubiaur’s Dilemma and Argentina’s Olympic Sports Legacy”. Olympika: The International Journal of Olympic Studies. Vol.7, 61-88. ------. 2001. “Tribulations and Achievements: The Early History of Olympism in Argentina”. The International Journal of the History of Sport. Vol.18, No.3, 59-92. ------. 2002. “Ideas encontradas: la educación física y el deporte en el debate parlamentario sobre la participación argentina en los Juegos Olímpicos de 1908”. Olympika: The International Journal of Olympic Studies. Vol.11, 117- 142. ------. 2003. “‘If We Had Had Our Argentine Team Here!’: Football and the 1924 Argentine Olympic Team”. Journal of Sport History. Vol.30, No.1, 1-24. ------. 2006a. “A Persistent Desire: An Account of Buenos Aires’ Efforts to Host the Olympic Games”. In Cultural Imperialism in Action, Critiques in the Global Olympic Trust: Eighth International Symposium for Olympic Research. Nigel B. Crowther, Robert K. Barney, Michael K. Heine, Cesar R. Torres, and Wanda Ellen Wakefield, 395-418. ------. 2006b. “The Latin American ‘Olympic Explosion’ of the 1920s: Causes and Consequences”. The International Journal of the History of Sport. Vol.23, No.7, 1088-1111. ------. 2008. "'Spreading the Olympic Idea’ to Latin America: The IOC-YMCA Partnership and the 1922 Latin American Games”. Journal of Olympic History. Vol.16, No.1, 16-24.