Muhammad Ali: Ringmaster of the Media

This post is the first in our Life and Legacy of Muhammad Ali Series guest edited by Andrew R.M. Smith. Muhammad Ali was a complex figure and he had a large influence beyond the United States. The goal of these posts is to explore various aspects of Ali’s life and reflect on his legacies, offering insight into understudied…

Review of Come Out Swinging

Trimbur, Lucia. Come Out Swinging: The Changing World of Boxing in Gleason’s Gym. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2013. Pp. xxi+200. Notes, bibliography, index, and methodological appendix. $27.95 hardback. Reviewed by Daryl Leeworthy Feel the Bern. An unlikely campaign slogan that has echoed around the world in the last few months, just as Yes We Can…

Sparring with Cinematic “Truth”: Race, Boxing, and Place in the Movie Creed (2015)

By Kate Aguilar In the 2014 documentary Champs, director Bert Marcus interviews boxing legends Evander Holyfield, Bernard Hopkins, and Mike Tyson, providing an intimate look at how race, class, gender, and place converge in the making of a boxing superstar.  The film begins with a voiceover from Philadelphia native Bernard Hopkins’ trainer, Naazim Richardson.  Hopkins successfully…

Review of Fight Sports and American Masculinity

Thrasher, Christopher David. Fight Sports and American Masculinity: Salvation in Violence from 1607 to the Present. Jefferson, NC: McFarland Publishing. Pp. 300. Notes and Index. $45.00 clothback. Reviewed by Matthew Hodler “Ambitious” is the first word that came to mind upon reading this book’s title and preface. Christopher David Thrasher, to his credit, attempts to…

Boxing: The Brief History of a “Science”

By Adam Park I recently tried to explain to a four-year-old why I whimpered in pain when she “honked” my nose. It was not easy. Boxing, I said. A friend punched me there several times because we were playing a game. She looked perplexed. But we weren’t fighting, I quickly qualified, we were just having…