Playing as if the World Mattered— A Review

Playing as if the World Mattered: An Illustrated History of Activism in Sports

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It’s true that, as Noam Chomsky says, sports reinforce irrational attitudes in submission to authority. It’s also true that more people spend their time obsessing over sports instead of focusing on politics – that people seem to care more about the exploits of millionaire athletes instead of the lobbying efforts of billionaires, and that only the latter will have a direct effect on their lives and the former won’t. And given the corruption and controversies surrounding major sports organizations (FIFA globally, NFL nationally), sports fans could use a little something to feel good about right now, and Kuhn’s colorfully illustrated book does the trick. It compiles instances in which sports organizations, teams and athletes have used sport as a populist and progressive platform (including Jackie Robinson, Roberto Clemente, Muhammad Ali, skateboarding, radical cheerleading, roller derby and much more!).

Back to Gabriel Kuhn’s Author Page