The Books


The John Carlos Story
The Sports Moment That Changed the World
By John Carlos and Dave Zirin, Foreword by Cornel West

The Chicago Tribune calls The John Carlos Story an 'excellent read...with plenty of humor, historical anecdotes, proud and sometimes depressing moments all written in a conversational manner. I felt like he was telling the story in front of me...I'll more than likely re-read this book just to enjoy it all over again.'

Seen around the world, John Carlos and Tommie Smith’s Black Power salute on the 1968 Olympic podium sparked controversy and career fallout. Yet their show of defiance remains one of the most iconic images of Olympic history and the Black Power movement. Here is the remarkable story of one of the men behind the salute, lifelong activist, John Carlos.


A THOUGHT-PROVOKING LOOK AT THE BIG BUSINESS AND IMMORAL PRACTICES BEHIND PROFESSIONAL SPORTS BY ACCLAIMED SPORTSWRITER DAVE ZIRIN, HAILED AS THE “CONSCIENCE OF AMERICAN SPORTSWRITING” (THE WASHINGTON POST )

The fastest-growing sector of today’s sports audience is the alienated fan. Complaints abound: from inflated ticket prices, $6 hot dogs, and $9 beers to owners endlessly demanding new multimillion-dollar stadiums funded by public tax dollars. Those sitting in the owners’ boxes are increasingly placing profit over players’ performances and fan loyalty. Bad Sports cuts through the hype and bombast to zero in on tales of abusive, dictatorial owners who move their teams thousands of miles away from their fan base, use their stadiums as religious and political platforms, or hold communities ransom for millions of dollars of taxpayer money to fund their gargantuan stadiums.

As the multibillion-dollar sports-industrial complex continues to lumber along, Dave Zirin is the voice in the wilderness, speaking out for the common fan with a tough, passionate, and intelligent voice that will remind readers that there is more to sportswriting than glowing athlete profiles. 


In this long-awaited book from the rising superstar of sportswriting, whose blog The Edge of Sports is read each week by thousands of people across the country, Dave Zirin offers a riotously entertaining chronicle of larger-than-life sporting characters and dramatic contests and what amounts to an alternative history of the United States as seen through the games its people played. Through Zirin's eyes, sports are never mere games, but a reflection of—and spur toward—the political conflicts that shape American society.

Half a century before Jackie Robinson was born, the black ballplayer Moses Fleetwood Walker brandished a revolver to keep racist fans at bay, then took his regular place in the lineup. In the midst of the Depression, when almost no black athletes were allowed on the U.S. Olympic team, athletes held a Counter Olympics where a third of the participants were African American.

A People's History of Sports in the United States is replete with surprises for seasoned sports fans, while anyone interested in history will be amazed by the connections Zirin draws between politics and pop flies. As Jeff Chang, author of Can't Stop Won't Stop, puts it, "After you read him, you'll never see sports the same way again."

Welcome to the Terrordome

This much-anticipated sequel to What's My Name, Fool? by acclaimed commentator Dave Zirin breaks new ground in sports writing, looking at the controversies and trends now shaping sports in the United States-and abroad. Features chapters such as "Barry Bonds is Gonna Git Your Mama: The Last Word on Steroids," "Pro Basketball and the Two Souls of Hip-Hop," "An Icon's Redemption: The Great Roberto Clemente," and "Beisbol: How the Major Leagues Eat Their Young."


Muhammad Ali Handbook

Dave Zirin provides a knowledgeable, analytic, sports-aficionado's journey through the starry trajectory of Ali's boxing career. Included are informative insights into Ali's relationship with Malcolm X, his personal journey within the Nation of Islam, and the moral crisis that brought him face to face with losing his boxing career (and millions of dollars) for his religious principles. Zirin offers intelligent, accurate assessment of Ali's extraordinary political involvement in the anti-Vietnam war protest and the Civil Rights movement in the USA. Includes unique interviews with famous sportswriters who followed Muhammad Ali from his early days, including Robert Lipsyte; Dave Kindred; Mike Marqusee; veteran journalist Lester Rodney; Ali's biographer, Thomas Hauser.


What's My Name, Fool!

Here Edgeofsports.com sportswriter Dave Zirin shows how sports express the worst, as well as the most creative and exciting, features of American society. Zirin explores how Janet Jackson's Super Bowl flash-time show exposed more than a breast, why the labor movement has everything to learn from sports unions and why a new generation of athletes is no longer content to "play one game at a time" and is starting to get political. What's My Name, Fool! draws on original interviews with former heavyweight champ George Foreman, Olympian and black power saluter John Carlos, NBA basketball player and anti-death penalty activist Etan Thomas, antiwar women's college hoopster Toni Smith, Olympic Project for Human Rights leader Lee Evans and many others.