The last few years have seen the publication of several wonderful new works on the past and present of women’s soccer globally. Gwendolyn Oxenham’s Under the Lights and in the Dark provides a rich portrait of contemporary players making their way in different parts of the world. And last year Brenda Elsey and Joshua Nadel published a path-breaking history of women’s soccer in Latin America called Futbolera.
We have had the pleasure of hosting a few events at Duke over the past years, linked to the Soccer Politics class, showcasing some of this work. A 2015 Symposium on “The Futures of Women’s Soccer” gathered together a range of scholars, journalists, players and coaches. That gathering led to the creation of a special series at Sports Illustrated, Upfront and Onside, of coverage and analysis of the 2015 Women’s World Cup.
One of the most remarkable stories told in Futbolera is that of the 1971 Women’s World Cup in Mexico, which happened the year after the famous Men’s World Cup there. The event drew huge crowds, and in fact the final of that tournament still holds the record for the largest crowd to watch a women’s soccer game in history. You can see footage of the game, which was played in El Azteca stadium, below.
And the documentary below (in Spanish) was produced in 2018 and includes interviews with a number of the players from the Mexican team.
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