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What's My Name, Fool? Sports and Resistance in the United States
In What’s My Name, Fool? sports writer Dave Zirin shows how sports express the worst - and at times the most creative, exciting, and political - features of our society. Zirin’s sharp and insightful commentary on the personalities, politics, and history of American sports is unlike any sports writing being done today.
Zirin explores how NBA brawls highlight tensions beyond the arena, how the bold stances taken by sports unions can chart a path for the entire labor movement, and the unexplored political stirrings of a new generation of athletes who are no longer content to just “play one game at a time.”
What’s My Name, Fool? draws on original interviews with former heavyweight champ George Foreman, Olympic athlete John Carlos, NBA player and anti-death penalty activist Etan Thomas, antiwar women’s college hoopster Toni Smith, Olympic Project for Human Rights leader Lee Evans and many others.
It also unearths a history of athletes ranging from Jackie Robinson to Muhammad Ali to Billie Jean King, who charted a new course through their athletic ability and their outspoken views.
About the author
Named of the UTNE Reader's "50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Our World", Dave Zirin writes about the politics of sports for the Nation Magazine. He is their first sports writer in 150 years of existence. Winner of Sport in Society and Northeastern University School of Journalism's 2011 'Excellence in Sports Journalism' Award, Zirin is also the host of the popular weekly show, Edge of Sports Radio. He has been called "the best sportswriter in the United States," by Robert Lipsyte. Dave Zirin is, in addition, a columnist for SLAM Magazine and the Progressive.
/What People Are Saying
“Beautifully illustrates the connection between sports, struggle, politics, and resistance.”
- Chuck D; Public Enemy
“Dave Zirin is an angry young man, and he's not bashful about telling you why—no quarter asked, no holds barred. In his new book, What's My Name, Fool?, he calls out the many inequities he sees on the level playing fields. It's good to read such an impassioned critic taking sport to task in a manner we haven't heard in some time.”
- Frank Deford, Sports Illustrated, National Public Radio’s Morning Edition, and HBO’s Real Sports
“Dave Zirin is that rarest of commodities in sports writing: an original voice. His writing reveals the ever present but ignored bridge between sports and struggle. What's My Name, Fool? will be loved by both Athletes who hate politics and activists who hate sports . As for progressives who are closet sports fans, finally here is a book for you.”
- Mary Ratcliff, Editor, San Francisco Bay View
“Dave Zirin is that rare thing—a writer who combines a passion for sport, deep knowledge of its history, and a fearlessly radical critique of the role the rich and powerful play in it.”
- Mike Marqusee, author, Redemption Song: Muhammad Ali and the Spirit of the Sixties
Published by Haymarket Press in 2005