Muhammad Ali was not only a champion athlete, but a cultural icon. While his skill as a boxer made him famous, his strong personality and his identity as a black man in a country in the midst of the struggle for civil rights made him an enduring symbol. From his youth in segregated Louisville, Kentucky, to his victory in the 1960 Olympics, to the controversy that surrounded his conversion to Islam and refusal of the draft during the Vietnam War, Ali's life was closely linked to the major social and political struggles of the 1960s and 70s. The story of his struggles, failures, and triumphs sheds light on issues of race, class, religion, dissent, and the role of sports in American society that affected all Americans.
In this lively, concise biography, Barbara L. Tischler introduces students to Ali's life in social and political context, and explores his enduring significance as a symbol of resistance. Muhammad Ali: A Many of Many Voices offers the perfect introduction to this extraordinary American and his times.
Table of Contents
Part I: Muhammad Ali
Introduction: Muhammad Ali’s Many Voices
1. From Gold Gloves to a Gold Medal
2. Becoming "The Greatest"
3. "What’s My Name?" From the Sports Pages to the Front Page
4. Fighting the Good Fight
5. "… And Still Champion"
6. Once Again a Hero
7. The Rumble, the Thrilla, and the End of a Career
Part II: Documents
Barbara L. Tischler is the Head of the Speyer Legacy School in New York City.
"Muhammad Ali: A Man of Many Voices is a clearly written and accessible synthesis that provides students with a broad and life-spanning introduction to a significant athlete who impacted the world beyond the ring."
-Michael Ezra, author of Muhammad Ali: The Making of an Icon
"Muhammad Ali: A Man of Many Voices does a fine job of taking us through the Champ's life, including fine descriptions of his fights. Barbara Tischler ably describes one of the greatest sports careers of the twentieth century, but far more, she shows us why Muhammad Ali mattered, still matters. If any man defined his times--turbulent, painful, wild times--it was Ali, and Tischler shows us how and why."
-Elliott Gorn, author of The Manly Art and co-author of A Brief History of American Sports (with Warren Goldstein)
"With a balanced mix of primary sources and secondary literature, Barbara Tischler has written an accessible and approachable account about the greatest athlete of this generation, Muhammad Ali. Muhammad Ali: A man of Many Voices, is a reader friendly text that accurately captures the social significance and complex life of ‘The Greatest.’"
-Louis Moore, Associate Professor of History, Grand Valley State University