Jack Johnson Black Prize Fighter - Unforgivable Blackness







Image Description. Portrait of Black Boxer Jack Johnson Standing next to his white wife Etta Terry Duryea Johnson. They married in January of 1911.




"Boxing has fallen into disfavor. . . The reason is clear: Jack Johnson . . . has out-sparred an Irishman. He did it with little brutality, the utmost fairness and great good nature. He did not "knock" his opponent senseless. . . Neither he nor his race invented prize fighting or particularly like it. Why then this thrill of national disgust? Because Johnson is black. Of course some pretend to object to Johnson's character. But we have yet to hear, in the case of White America, that marital troubles have disqualified prize fighters or ball players or even statesmen. It comes down, then, after all to this unforgivable blackness."

W.E.B. DuBois, The Crisis (1914)

Jack johnson's undisputed world boxing championship, combined with his interracial  marriage caused such a furor that members of the  U.S. Congress tried to introduce a nationwide anti miscegenation law in the 1912–1913 session. 

How big is your brave?

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