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Ali bumaye!


After seeing Will Smith as Ali in the eponymous movie, I got interested and read Hauser’s biography (Hauser, Thomas (2004 Reprint). Muhammad Ali: His Life and Times. Robson Books. ISBN 1-86105-738-5.) What an exhilarating book and person. The books is not so much written as compiled: Hauser has interviewed tens of people, and the book tells the story through sets of quotations stiched together by short paragraphs by Hauser. This not only gives a feeling of autheticity and vividity to the book, but also lets people keep their own views and opinions. Contradictions are not brushed aside. Amazingly enough, even Hauser’s own view and voice comes through. I don’t think I have read any other biography written in this manner, but it seems that it is a very generous way of doing it. Probably extremely tedious, too, doing all those interviews and putting it all together.

As a kid in the 70’s, “Muhammad Ali” was used as a name that represented unbeatable strenght. But there is so much more, as the book explains. It can’t be too easy for the Muslim community in the States these days. The flow of events from the 60’s until the late 80’s told through Ali’s life is just mind-boggling. So much has changed for the better – but also for the worse.

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