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Sunday, 04 May 2014
Eloge de l'esquive (Homage to the weave)

Olivier Guez is the writer of Eloge de l'esquive (Grasset, 2014), an essay on Brazilian dribbling seen from an historic, sociological, anthropological angle... The weave, in Brazilian football has been elevated to an art form. And it constitutes a key to understanding the country: the victories and defeats of the national team are part of the founding stages of the collective unconscious.

The history of dribbling is a social history, at the source of the Brazilian racial melting pot. The first black players for Brazil began dribbling to avoid contact with white defenders to avoid getting creamed on and off the pitch. Garrincha, Pelé and some others were the geniuses behind the football style that corresponds to the sway of the "malandros" of the favelas, playing with all kinds of obstacles to affirm the power of life with guile and joy.

 

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