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Revista Brasileira de Ciências do Esporte

Print version ISSN 0101-3289


DEVIDE, Fabiano Pries  and  VOTRE, Sebastião Josué. Beginning of female competitive swimming: from "elegance race" to Los Angeles Olympic Games. Rev. Bras. Ciênc. Esporte [online]. 2012, vol.34, n.1, pp.217-233. ISSN 0101-3289.

The objective of this study is to construct the historical narrative of the appearance of swimming competitions for women up to 1932. Two swimmers who actually participated in this process were interviewed: Blanche Pironnet, and Maria Lenk. Documents from other sources were also used in the process. The interpretation of the sources shows that at the beginning of the 20th century, swimming was a locus of symbolic power, which permitted elite women to conquer public space without much social resistance at the same time that they made it appropriate to state eugenic projects and became visible to a patriarchal and conservative society.

Keywords : history; sport; swimming; women.

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