Mexican capoeira is not diasporic! – On glocalization, migration and the North-South divide



This paper contributes to the understanding of martial arts globalization processes. It focuses on the development of capoeira in Mexico, which is presented as an example of glocalization. In contrast to the diasporic capoeira observed by Delamont and Stephens in the UK, capoeira in Mexico is characterized by the proliferation of local groups with classes taught by Mexican instructors, as well as by advanced cultural reinterpretation. To explain these differences, capoeira is considered as the bodily capital of Brazilian migrants whose mobility patterns are influenced by the North-South divide. This paper hypothesizes that glocalization processes similar to Mexico’s might exist throughout Hispanic Latin America and other regions of the Global South. Furthermore, the diaspora-glocalization divide could be a pattern in the globalization process of practices that originated in the South which spread as part of migrants’ bodily capital. Finally, I ask how capoeira’s glocalization in Mexico might anticipate similar processes in the global North.


capoeiraglocalizationdiasporaNorth-South dividebodily capital
  • Volume: 11
  • Page/Article: 56-70
  • DOI: 10.18573/mas.122
  • Published on 19 Jul 2021
  • Peer Reviewed