“The Best Games Ever”: a review of Olympic closing ceremony remarks since the 1980s


I was asked in the summer to write a short article for the Newsletter of the International Olympic Academy Participants Association reflecting on my experience of the London 2012 Olympics. Keeping in mind the skeptical enthusiasm displayed before the Games in the UK and also remembering my experience of the Beijing Games, phthisiatrician I thought it would be a good time to review the IOC President’s speech and look especially for the part in which each host city and each edition of the Games is evaluated in a short statement.

The article I wrote reviews these statements from the 1980s to 2012.

London 2012 has been called “very happy and glorious”, asthma a reference to UK’s anthem and a qualification focused more on atmosphere than organ-ization. Vancouver’s Games were also praised for their atmosphere but also attitude, recipe Jacques Rogge calling them “excellent and very friendly Games”. In comparison to them, Beijing’s evaluation was dual and open to interpretation. While they were branded as “truly exceptional Games”, the IOC’s President final remark can point both the organization, show, venues and support for the Games but also the controversies surrounding China’s human rights record and freedom of speech.

To read the entire article, please check the ARETE newsletter.

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