“Exodus of champions,” Daniel Lawrence Taradash

Muhammad Ali Speaking, 1968
Muhammad Ali, 1968 Yearbook, p.30
Muhammad Ali, 1968 Yearbook, p.30. He spoke in the IMU on Sunday 19 Nov, 1967. Robert http://digital.lib.uiowa.edu/cdm/ref/collection/yearbooks/id/537 Read more in the 21 Nov 1967 Daily Iowan. http://dailyiowan.lib.uiowa.edu/DI/1967/di1967-11-21.pdf

Daniel Lawrence Taradash’s 2015 dissertation looks at how popular heavyweight champions were shaped by the political and social environments of their time.


Muhammad Ali[…]his stances on Vietnam, race relations and religion during this period have provided a fountain of historical research and narratives on this very turbulent period. However, what about the political and social activities of Ali’s contemporaries? Floyd Patterson, Sonny Liston, Joe Frazier and George Foreman were[…]profoundly affected by the mass exodus of Blacks out of the South[…] shaped their ideas and understandings about racial identity, civil rights and race relations in their adult lives.

Focusing on Floyd Patterson, Sonny Liston, Joe Frazier and George Foreman, he explores the differences in opinion each man had regarding issues such as segregation and how they defined themselves against Ali’s largely ignored, hardline segregationist stance. Read more about the largely uncovered perspectives of heavyweight boxing champions during the civil rights era in this engaging dissertation.

Daniel Lawrence Taradash. “Exodus of champions : the great migration and the shaping of the civil rights activities of Floyd Patterson, Sonny Liston, Joe Frazier and George Foreman.” PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) thesis, University of Iowa, 2015.