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Keywords:

  • CAPOEIRA;
  • BRAZIL;
  • TRANSNATIONALISM;
  • CORPOREAL MOVEMENT;
  • SPORT;
  • TORONTO

Abstract

In this article I use a case study of capoeira (an Afro-Brazilian martial art/dance/game) in Canada to bring together sport and transnationality literatures. I show that understandings of transnationality can be extended through both investigating people born and raised in the North, since they play an important role in creating transnational spaces, and attending to the corporeal means that people deploy to connect to a homeland or ‘travel’ to a foreign country. Through adopting a particular racialized/ national style of movement, those who ‘stay put’ in the North can ‘move’ across ethnic boundaries, if not geopolitical borders. Real (international), imagined (virtual and emotional), and corporeal (embodied) ‘travel’ to Brazil are key experiences of the senior capoeirista (capoeira devotee). Sporting activities provide an exceptional window onto transnationality studies, given that ways of moving are fundamental to social, cultural and national identities.