March 25, 2012

IS THERE ANYTHING GAYER THAN FRENCH SOCCER PLAYERS?:

Homophobia, football, and the French kiss making headlines (Daniel Jacobius Morgan, 25 March 2012, New Statesman)

A viral video of two French international footballers tenderly kissing in front of a stadium full of fans has entranced the Francophone media. After scoring against Germany in a friendly match, Olivier Giroud is shown grabbing his teammate Mathieu Debuchy's face with both hands and kissing him on the lips. As one blogger breathlessly wrote, "It was fleeting but passionate."

The clip was played repeatedly on French news channels in slow motion and from a variety of different angles, with pundits and fans agitatedly debating whether it was a moment of harmless heteronormative bonding, or something altogether more subversive. Asserting his heterosexuality, Giroud told the media, "We simply brushed [cheeks]. I was just thanking him. I am an affectionate person. There's nothing more to it." Despite the fact that these two men are resolutely straight, the reaction to the clip raises the question of why a moment of apparent homosexuality in the context of a football match raises so many eyebrows.

What would be genuinely shocking is a video of one of them throwing overhand.

Posted by at March 25, 2012 9:32 AM
  

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