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Kite fight

5 minutes

‘Since we don’t have wings we fly kites’ – aerial combat above Rio’s favelas

‘When we fly a kite up high we feel free.’

Kites are hugely popular in Rio de Janeiro’s favelas, where they are made using cheap materials and easily flown in the breezy, coastal skies. But instead of leisurely trying to keep their home-made creations afloat, flyers engage in competitive ‘kite fights’ with the aim of cutting their opponent’s line with their own. While the sport pits rooftop against rooftop and neighbourhood against neighbourhood, its overall effect is to bring people in the favela together around a tradition that’s about fun and freedom above all else.

Director: Guilherme Tensol

Producer: Fernanda Coelho, Mañhana Laborda, Délio Santiago

Website: Mosquito Project, Victory Journal

Support Aeon

Ideas can change the world

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview.

But we can’t do it without you.

Aeon is a registered charity committed to the spread of knowledge and a cosmopolitan worldview. Our mission is to create a sanctuary online for serious thinking.

No ads, no paywall, no clickbait – just thought-provoking ideas from the world’s leading thinkers, free to all. But we can’t do it without you.

Become a Friend for $5 a month or Make a one-off donation

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