The athlete and the hero's myth: places of becoming human

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Neilton Ferreira Junior


The second edition of O atleta e o mito do herói celebrates not only the twentieth year of the publication of this seminal work, but the intellectual trajectory of one the most important thinkers of the Brazilian Olympic Movement, Katia Rubio. At the head of Grupo de Estudos Olímpicos of USP (BRA), she brought the human condition of athletes to the center of contemporary sports imagery, considering their voices, memories, and subjectivities as privileged sources of knowledge about the meanings, contradictions, injustices, and potency of sport. The relationship that her work established between athlete and mythical journey demands a concentration of interdisciplinary effort and methodological rigor to the apprehension of trajectories which, beyond the obligatoriness to the search for winning, also stand out dedicated to a certain fidelity to a desire to Being. A desire that offers us a fortune of images, such a set of gestures of confrontation against the forces of dehumanization that often make sport their instrument. As a result of a reinterpretation and dialogue with Rubio's work, the present reflection supports the idea that the athlete and the hero's myth, more than social and anthropological categories, represent the headquarters of a Becoming Human.

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Author Biography

Neilton Ferreira Junior, Escola de Educação Física e Esporte - Universidade de São Paulo

Mestre em Ciências pela Escola de Educação Física e Esporte da Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Graduado em Educação Física pelo Centro de Ciências Biológicas e da Saúde da Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie. Membro da Academia Olímpica Brasileira. Pesquisador do Centro de Estudos Socioculturais do Movimento Humano e do Grupo de Estudos Olímpicos da USP. Coordenador de projetos Internos do Núcleo de Esporte e Lazer do Centro Educacional Unificado Butantã (2014-2017).