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Don’t Believe the Hype

Don’t Believe the Hype

The Racial Representation of Mike Tyson in Three Acts

Chapter:
(p.45) Don’t Believe the Hype
Source:
Fame to Infamy
Author(s):
Thabiti Lewis
Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781604737516.003.0004

This chapter examines race as a factor in the performance of a sports celebrity, using Mike Tyson as a focus. It contends that black athletes were often represented as villains in sport, as shown in the case of Muhammad Ali, Jack Johnson, and Barry Bonds. It shows that Tyson’s reputation originated in the aftermath of black athletes’ struggles in the 1960s and 1970s.

Keywords:   black athlete, race, Mike Tyson, sports celebrity, Muhammad Ali, Jack Johnson, Barry Bonds

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