28 Oct Why Every Sports Fan Should Read Arthur Ashe’s 1988 Book on the History of Black Athletes
The world of men’s tennis is full of legendary figures. Two of them—Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal—are still very much in the midst of their playing careers. Others like Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, and Bjorn Borg have seen their reputations grow even in retirement. The accomplishments of such men are unimpeachable, but rarely extend beyond the court.
The late Arthur Ashe holds a far more unique place in tennis history, having been both a dominant player and a leading social activist. Ashe was the first black man to win a major tennis title. He was also a strong advocate of black athletes in general. Here we take a look back at his career, while investigating his pioneering three-volume study of black athletes and its ongoing relevance today.