A new film by Philosophy Football explores the potential for sport as resistance. Featuring Grace Petrie, Jimmy Ross, Finlay Allison, Kate Smurthwaite, Simon Munnery and Musa Okwonga
One hundred years ago, Christmas Eve 1914, German troops began the evening by singing Stille Nacht.
Recognising a familiar tune the British troops soon joined in, followed by each side applauding the other's singing.
Christmas Day 1914 dawn breaks and a German soldier crosses into No Man's land with a football in his hand. With greatcoats for goalposts the British soldiers join him and for 90 minutes a game of football stops the war.
Today Philosophy Football launches a film to mark this extraordinary occasion. With ideas from Dave Zirin, David Goldblatt and Birgitt Gloeckl of German's Academy of Football and Culture. Music provided by Grace Petrie, Jimmy Ross and Finlay Allison. Comedy from Kate Smurthwaite and Simon Munnery, poetry by Musa Okwonga. Together they, and others, celebrate the 90-minute truce, question why the fighting resumed on Boxing Day and to what cause and effect. Most of all they explore the potential for sport as resistance, football V war.
Mark Perryman is the author of ‘Ingerland : Travels with a Football Nation’, and editor of ‘London 2012 How Was It For Us’. A Research Fellow in Sport and Leisure Culture at the University of Brighton Mark is a regular media commentator on the politics of sport and the co-founder of the self-styled ‘sporting outfitters of intellectual distinction’ Philosophy Football. His latest book marks the 50th anniversary of England winning the World Cup. 1966 And Not All That is pubIished by Repeater Books and available from here.