Bass, Amy

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Female. Education: Attended Williams College, 1991; Bates College, B.A., 1992; State University of New York, M.A./Ph.D., 1999.


Office—Plattsburgh State University, History Department, Champlain Valley Hall, 320, Plattsburgh, NY 12901. E-mail—[email protected].


Plattsburgh State University, Plattsburgh, NY, assistant professor of history. NBC research team member for Atlanta Olympics, 1996, Sydney Olympics, 2000, and Salt Lake City Olympics, 2002.


Not the Triumph but the Struggle: The 1968 Olympics and the Making of the Black Athlete, University of Minnesota Press (Minneapolis, MN), 2002.


A monograph that centers on W. E. B. Du Bois; an edited volume on ideas of race and sports.


In her book Not the Triumph but the Struggle: The 1968 Olympics and the Making of the Black Athlete historian Amy Bass examines the civil rights movement as it relates to sports. The specific focus is the 1968 Summer Olympics held in Mexico City, where Harry Edwards had called for African-American athletes to boycott the games to protest racism in the United States. Though the boycott failed to attract enough supporters, American track stars Tommie Smith and John Carlos, who won gold and bronze medals, respectively, made their point when they raised their black-gloved fists on the winners' podium in symbolic protest. Bass details the context of their controversial action and explains its impact on U.S. society and on the world of sports.

In a Press Republican online interview with Jeff Meyers, Bass explained, "It's not a book about sports. It's more about civil rights history more than anything else. Sports is an amazing venue to study the civil rights struggle, but this book is not confined to sports." The book describes the conditions in the United States that moved Smith and Carlos to take action, explains the Olympic Project for Human Rights and the Black Power Movement, and discusses what came to be seen as a politicization of sports following the protest. But as Daniel Caplice Lynch observed in the Berkshire Eagle, "Bass makes clear that the games have always been political." Praising the book's lucid prose and sophisticated analysis, Philadelphia City Paper contributor Cindy Fuchs commended Not the Triumph but the Struggle as an "absorbing and cogent" study that traces nothing less than the "'historical production of the black athlete.'"



Library Journal, November 1, 2002, R. C. Cottrell, review of Not the Triumph but the Struggle: The 1968 Olympics and the Making of the Black Athlete p. 97.


Berkshire Eagle online, (March 20, 2003), Daniel Caplice Lynch, "New Book Explores the Role of Black Athletes in the U.S."

Philadelphia City Paper online, (March, 20, 2003), Cindy Fuchs, review of Not the Triumph but the Struggle.

Plattsburgh State University Web site, (January 20, 2003), "Amy Bass."

Press Republican Web site, (March 20, 2003), Jeff Meyers, "A Moment That Changed Sports for Good."

University Press of Minnesota Web site, (January 20, 2003), review of Not the Triumph but the Struggle.*