African-American Athletes (A to Z of African Americans)

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9780816048052: African-American Athletes (A to Z of African Americans)

Athletes have always been seen as role models, as heroes, as gifted individuals who can entertain and inspire their fans with acts of grace, strength, agility, and skill. From ice hockey to track and field, from tennis to boxing, African Americans have excelled in every major sport. From the late 19th century through the present day, many of the most respected and well-known personalities in professional and amateur sports have been African Americans. African-American Athletes highlights those athletes, men and women, who have competed at the highest levels in one or more sports and set new standards of accomplishment for those who have followed them. Each entry provides an exciting and enlightening biographical profile, concentrating on the events in that person's life related to his or her accomplishments in sports, followed by an up-to-date further reading list on that individual. A general introduction orients the reader to African Americans in sports, subject indexes list each athlete by date of birth and by sport, and a general bibliography lists other resources on the topic. The general reader, the student, and the sports fan will find the information contained in this book fascinating and easy to access.

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From Booklist:

Here are two strong additions to the A-Z of African Americans series for students and general readers. Other titles in the series have included volumes on African American business leaders, religious leaders, and mathematicians and scientists.

The volume focusing on professional and amateur athletes is written by the veteran children's biography author Aaseng. Profiles cover more than 155 athletes, with information on their lives and their athletic accomplishments. Individuals were selected for inclusion based on a variety of factors--statistics, championships, recognition by peers, or pioneering efforts. Among them are Hank Aaron (baseball's career home-run leader), John Davis (two-time Olympic weightlifter), Emmitt Smith (professional football player), and Debi Thomas (Olympic figure skater). All but a handful are from the twentieth century. Failures and missteps of the athletes are not ignored, nor are they sensationalized.

African Americans in the Performing Arts features actors, dancers, singers, musicians, composers, and choreographers. Composers and choreographers such as Quincy Jones and Katherine Dunham are included when they are performers as well as creators.

The biographies mainly encompass performers from the early twentieth century through the 2002 Academy Awards. Selections were based on "personal preference, historical importance, variety, and level of achievement." Some 190 biographies treat notables such as Harry Belafonte, Duke Ellington, W. C. Handy, Roland Hayes, Ice-T, Frankie Lymon, and Bessie Smith. Entries describe each subject's life and how personal experience affected his or her art and, in many cases, his or her social activism. The unique individuality of the person is stressed in all cases.

The reader will be aided by the list of entries at the front of each book as well as the index, bibliography, and lists of entries by activity and year of birth at the back. Further reading is included at the end of each one- to two-page entry, and there are cross-references within each entry to the other entries. Some entries are accompanied by photographs.

Writing is clear and well suited for the audience. Both volumes will be useful sources for information and are recommended for school and public libraries.RBB
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Nathan Aaseng
Published by Facts on File (2003)
ISBN 10: 0816048053 ISBN 13: 9780816048052
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Nathan Aaseng
Published by Facts on File (2003)
ISBN 10: 0816048053 ISBN 13: 9780816048052
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