Thursday, February 22, 2007

Muhammad Ali is moving back to his hometown of Louisville, where apparently many people still harbor ill will toward The Greatest for his refusal to serve in Vietnam. If you're a fan of boxing--or merely a fan of great writing--you might want to check out David Remnick's "King of the World", which is about Ali's early career, ending with his battle over the draft. It's also an interesting portrait of Ali's relationship to the era's other great black heavyweights, the deferential Floyd Patterson and the thuggish Sonny Liston. (Liston fans should check out "The Devil and Sonny Liston" by Nick Tosches.) To Remnick, Ali was the synthesis of those two fighters, representing a type of black man that America had never seen before.

And don't forget "On Boxing" by Joyce Carol Oates.

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