July 03, 2003

Frustrated Pugilist Watch Norman Mailer

Frustrated Pugilist Watch

Norman Mailer is asking why we went to war in Iraq in the pages of the NYRB. One "significant" reason?

"...the ongoing malaise of the white American male. He had been taking a daily drubbing over the last thirty years. For better or worse, the women's movement has had its breakthrough successes and the old, easy white male ego has withered in the glare. Even the consolation of rooting for his team on TV had been skewed. For many, there was now measurably less reward in watching sports than there used to be, a clear and declarable loss. The great white stars of yesteryear were for the most part gone, gone in football, in basketball, in boxing, and half gone in baseball. Black genius now prevailed in all these sports (and the Hispanics were coming up fast; even the Asians were beginning to make their mark). We white men were now left with half of tennis (at least its male half), and might also point to ice hockey, skiing, soccer, golf (with the notable exception of the Tiger), as well as lacrosse, track, swimming, and the World Wrestling Federation—remnants of a once great and glorious white athletic centrality."

Is it just me, or are Mailer's musings really a function of him, deep down, having wanted to be Muhammed Ali ever since the 1974 Zaire bout with George Foreman?

Posted by Gregory at July 3, 2003 08:31 PM
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