Fight of the Century: Jack Johnson, Joe Louis, and the Struggle for Racial Equality / Edition 1

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Overview

This is a revealing look at the history of race relations in the United States during the first half of the twentieth century portrayed through the lives and times of the first two African-American heavyweight boxing champions, Jack Johnson and Joe Louis. Incorporating extensive research into the black press of the time, the author explores how the public careers and private lives of these two sports figures both define and explain vital national issues from the early 1900s to the late 1940s.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
"Among the most prominent African Americans between the end of the first Reconstruction and the beginning of the second," heavyweight champions Jack Johnson and Joe Louis embodied the hopes of black America. Through their stories, historian Thomas R. Hietala explores race relations in his scholarly but accessible history, The Fight of the Century: Jack Johnson, Joe Louis, and the Struggle for Equality. He traces the extraordinary symbolic meaning their victories had for both black and white spectators and media, and the historical backdrop against which their respective victories took place, from the rash of exceptionally brutal lynchings of the 1910s and Woodrow Wilson's frankly anti-integration policies, to the evolution of the urban ghetto and the persistence of Jim Crow in the 1930s and 1940s.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780765607232
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 3/31/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 390
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction: "Many Thousand Gone"; 1. "A Retribution Seeks": White Repression and Black Redemption; 2. "A Tempest of Dispraise": From Black Hope to Black Burden; 3. "Under the White Man's Menace": Divisive Wars at Home and Abroad; 4. "Outcasts Asylumed": Exile's Return and Legacy; 5. "Don't You Fall Now": A New Race Ambassador Emerges; 6. "No Other Dream, No Land But This": Black-Americans and the Enemy Within; 7. "Another World Be Born": In Search of Victory at Home and Abroad; 8. "The Harder They Fall": A Champion's Life and Legend

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