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Temple University Press
Silent Gesture: The Autobiography of Tommie Smith

Silent Gesture: The Autobiography of Tommie Smith

by Tommie Smith, David Steele
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At the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, Tommie Smith and his teammate John Carlos came in first and third, respectively, in the 200-meter dash. As they received their medals, each man raised a black-gloved fist, creating an image that will always stand as an iconic representation of the complicated conflations of race, politics, and sports. In this, his autobiography, Smith fills out the story around that moment--how it came to be and where it led him.

Smith engagingly describes his life-long commitment to athletics, education, and human rights. He also dispels some of the myths surrounding his famous gesture of protest: contrary to legend, Smith was not a member of the Black Panthers, nor were his medals taken back by the Olympic Committee. Retelling the fear he felt in planning and carrying out his protest, the death threats against him, his difficulty in finding work, and his determination to live his values, he conveys the long, painful backlash that came with his fame, and his fate, all of which was wrapped up in his "silent gesture."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781592136391
Publisher: Temple University Press
Publication date: 02/28/2007
Series: Sporting Series
Pages: 288
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

Table of Contents

Welcome Home     1
October 16, 1968     20
Out of the Fields     42
The Biggest City I Had Ever Seen     73
Run Before You Walk     95
The Coach and the Professor     114
Linked Forever     135
No Gold, No Glove     148
Paying the Price     172
Going Underground     194
Families Lost, and Found     211
It Will Outlive Me     233
Epilogue: Silent and Eternal     255
Acknowledgments     259
Index     261

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