About the Program
Wil Haygood recalls the life of boxer Sugar Ray Robinson in Sweet Thunder. Born Walker Smith, Jr., the future title-holder spent his formative years in Harlem and mixed his pugilistic career with the happenings of the Harlem Renaissance. Mr. Haygood, recounts Sugar Ray's connections to Langston Hughes, Miles Davis, and Lena Horne, a generation of African-American who found success in their respective fields during the start of a broader civil rights movement. Wil Haygood discusses his book with Dave Zirin, sports columnist for The Nation magazine and author of A People's History of Sports in the United States. The Chicago Tribune selected Sweet Thunder as one of their notable non-fiction books of 2009.
Wil Haygood is a staff writer at The Washington Post. He is the author King of the Cats: The Life and Times of Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. and In Black and White: The Life of Sammy Davis, Jr., which was the recipient of the Nonfiction Book Award from the Black Caucus of the American Library Association.
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Dave Zirin is the sports columnist for The Nation. He is the author of several books, including What's My Name Fool?: Sports and Resistance in the United States and A People's History of Sports in the United States. Mr. Zirin is the host of Edge of Sports Radio on XM satellite radio and writes a weekly column, Edge of Sports. For more information, visit edgeofsports.com.