The Manly Art Summary

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The Manly Art tells the story of boxing 's origins and the sport 's place in American culture. The book was first published in 1986, the book helped shape the ways historians write about American sport and culture, expanding scholarly boundaries by exploring masculinity as an historical subject and by suggesting that social categories like gender, class, and ethnicity can be understood only in relation to each other. In 2010 it was republished and features a new afterword, the author 's meditation on the ways in which studies of sport, gender, and popular culture have changed in the quarter century since the book was first published. An up-to-date bibliography ensures that The Manly Art will remain a vital resource for a new generation. This…show more content…
The book highlights the good and the bad of the sport. For someone who may not be too interested in it, or just has to read it for a history class, he made it entertaining. Giving not only a history lesson on the sport but just as much on the working class of America and the emerging commercialized leisure’s and shifting social classes in the nineteenth century. Gorn is able to interweave social and political issues of the times all told with characters as colorful and wild as the early days of this country. Men crave the order of violence with rules and attach elevated importance to such contests in part because so much of life is entirely unjust and oppressive. Violence is not something one, no matter one 's level of expertise, can actually plan for. I can think of many tough young men dead young now. The symbolism of the ring, or the octagon gain resonance because they appeal to our desperate need for order out of the desperate appearance of chaos, for a struggle, if not for a taste of our hero 's invulnerability, for a portion of his honor and nobility. Gorn ties this drive, over time, to the class struggle both in England and America, and how the working class who fought for workers rights often identified closely with great fighters and bare-knuckle boxers. This is not a mindless venture into violence this study is a glimpse into the reality of working class heroes that perhaps many who purport to be their champions among the liberal class would rather shy away from.
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