This scene was shot in Cidade Tiradentes, a neighbourhood in the periphery of São Paulo, on June 17, 2014, during the Mexico-Brazil game (a 0-0 draw). We directed the clip.
The video depicts the contagious passion of Brazilians for football (soccer). It provides one way of looking at sports aficionados at the local level and outside mass media. It shows how football fans interact with each other and with the television set during the game. It highlights how the World Cup was consumed at the local level. It is also a spontaneous performance of nationalism. Experiencing this event mediated by the television set meant different things for each of us.
Alexandrine: I arrived in SP on June 15 — my first visit to Brazil. My knowledge of Portuguese being limited, I was especially aware of the sonic (firecrackers, air and vuvuzelas horns) and visual aspects (colors, flags, t-shirts, banners, graffiti) rather than the spoken language. The football fans in the bar all knew each other, took care of each other’s children and made fun of each other. They were all waiting for ‘the’ goal that never happened. Their attention was constantly shifting between their friends and the television. Observing the scene reminded me of a family portrait.
Rose: I went to Cidade Tiradentes as a field researcher for the first time almost 10 years ago. But Mexico vs. Brazil was my first World Cup game experience in this place, the largest social housing complex in Latin America. In a neighborhood where people built their own houses in a community help system, an outdated television, unlike the flat screens workers from the outskirts like to buy for their home, connected us with all Brazilians, who, rich or poor, were suffering together with our team. Worst days would come...
Sylvia: First time for me as a researcher in the outskirts of SP. As an anthropologist used to indigenous villages, the periphery may seem exotic... I was amazed to realize these people did not just "watch" the game, simply admiring with their eyes; their whole-bodies were in motion, leaping, hugs, pulling their hair, punches, screams all over. When it comes to football, Brazilians are not passive viewers. It is very different from what happens with other sports, such as tennis, swimming or team sports like basketball and volleyball, in which the audience remains relatively passive.