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Unformatted text preview: nd followed by enormous numbers of men, not only because men greatly admire physical
prowess, but because the intense excitement is sought. I know more than one business and professional man
who goes to the "fights" because only there can he get a thrill. There is a generalized mild anhedonia in the
community, which has its origin in the fatigue of overintense purposes, failure to realize ideals and the
difficulties of choice. People who suffer in this way often seek the sedentary satisfaction of watching
competitive professional games.
Indeed, the hold of competition on man exists not alone in his rivalry feeling toward others; it is evidenced
also in the excitement he immediately feels in the presence of competitive struggle, even though he himself
has little or no personal stake. Man is a partisan creature and loves to take sides. This is remarkably
demonstrated by children, and is almost as well shown in the play of adults. A recent international prize fight
awakened more intense interest than almost any international event of whatever real importance. That same
day it passed practically unnoticed that America ended a state of war with Germany.
A law of excitement, that it lies in part in a personal hazard accounts for the growth of betting at games. The
effort to gain adds to the interest, i. e., excitement. That it adds tension as well and may result in fatigue and
further boredom is not reckoned with by the bettor or gambler. To follow the middle of the road in anything is
difficult, and nowhere is it more beset with danger than in the seeking of excitement.
Games of skill of all kinds, whether out of doors or within; baseball, cricket, billiards, and pool afford, then,
the pleasure of exertion and competition in an exciting way and yet one removed from too great a stake.
Defeat is not bitter, though victory is sweet; a good game is desired, and an easy opponent is not welcomed.
The spirit of this kind of play has been of great value to society, for it has brought the feeling of fair play and
sportsmanship to the world. Primitive in its origin, to take defeat nobly and victory with becoming modesty is
the civilizing influence of sportsmansh...
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This note was uploaded on 09/26/2011 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 110 taught by Professor Kannan during the Spring '11 term at Anna University Chennai - Regional Office, Coimbatore.
- Spring '11