This absorbing book unravels the reasons for the enduring respect and reverence that Muhammad Ali commands long after the end of his athletic career. It will appeal to those teaching and studying cultural studies, social theory, sports studies, and sociology, as well as to general readers interested in Muhammad Ali. * A probing account of Muhammad Ali's life, which also examines the man's celebrity and his importance in global history. * The first book to unravel the reasons for the enduring respect and reverence that Muhammad Ali commands long after the end of his athletic career. * Traces the key controversies and significant events, from Alia s first announcement of his membership in the Nation of Islam, through his courageous refusal to fight in Vietnam, to his spiritual calm in the face of crippling disease. * Offers an original and compelling theory of the celebrity in postmodern society.
Charles Lemert is Professor of Sociology at Wesleyan University.
1. From the Beginnings : GG is Gonna Whip Everybody. 2. Celebrity, Tricks, and Culture: Float like a Butterfly, Sting like a Bee. 3. Trickster Queers the World: I Don't Have to Be What You Want Me to Be. 4. The Irony of Global Cultures: No Viet Cong ever Called me Nigger. 5. Coming Home to the Heart of Darkness: When we were Kings. 6. Trickster Bodies and Cultural Death: You'll Die One Day So Better Get Ready. Ali and the World: A Chronology. Notes. Acknowledgments. Index.