Documentary to explore Olympic evictions in Rio de Janeiro

The Pell Honors Program will sponsor an upcoming documentary screening focusing on residents in Vila Autodromo, a neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro that was decimated as the city prepared to host the 2016 Olympics.

“Dirty Games: Olympic Evictions in Rio de Janeiro” will be shown at 6 p.m. Monday, Nov. 27 in the Bazarsky Lecture Hall. The screening is open to the University community and the general public.

Directed by social anthropologists Jose Alejandro Huidobro Goya and Margit Ystanes, the film explores topics such as what it means to lose a home, the anguish this loss produces, and the role of sporting mega-events on urban development and inequality.

Working with local and international activists, journalists, researchers and filmmakers, the residents succeeded in catapulting their struggle to remain in Vila Autodromo onto the world stage. The film examines the context for these events – the Olympics as a vehicle for urban development, corruption, inequality and global trends – prioritizing profit rather than human needs in the use of land.

The most important question explored in the film, however, is why the resistance to leave Vila Autodromo was so strong. What is lost when homes and neighborhoods are destroyed?

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