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An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.  -- Gandhi

Dave Zirin

Sports Writer, Columnist, and Radio Host

speaking on

Sports and Resistance


Dave Zirin, Sports and Resistance, March 4, 2014

Dave Zirin and Student Panel, March 4, 2014

     Sports—from the school yard, to college athletics, to professional teams, to the Olympics—provide exercise and entertainment to millions. But sports are also big business. And sports is a social institution that both reflects and confronts many of our most pressing social problems, like racism, sexism, homophobia, and corporate domination.

     Sports is thus a social justice question and an arena in which social justice struggles take place. Do sports treat people of all races equally? Are women’s sports funded and promoted in the same way as men’s sports? Are gays and lesbians second-class athletes? Do team owners subordinate the enjoyment of sports to their profits? How have athletes been able to challenge injustice in sports and in the larger society?

     No one is better equipped to discuss these sorts of issues than Dave Zirin.

     Dave Zirin is a sports writer, sports columnist, and sports radio host. He is the author of seven books:

  • Game Over: How Politics Has Turned the Sports World Upside Down (2012).Sports Illustrated said this book “will make you think about what we’re really seeing when we watch the games we love.”
  • The John Carlos Story: The Sports Moment that Changed the World (2011). Co-authored with John Carlos, nominated for the NAACP Image Award.
  • Bad Sports: How Owners are Ruining the Games We Love(2010).
  • A People’s History of Sports in the United States: 250 Years of Politics, Protest, People, and Play (2008), which forms the basis of a documentary co-written and narrated by Zirin called Not Just A Game: Power, Politics and American Sports. He has a second documentary called Race, Power, and Politics in American Sports.
  • Welcome to the Terrordome: The Pain, Politics, and Promise of Sports (2007).
  • The Muhammad Ali Handbook (2007).
Dave Zirin
  • What’s My Name, Fool? Sports and Resistance in the United States (2005).

      Dave Zirin writes about the politics of sports for the Nation Magazine, for SLAM Magazine, and for the Progres- sive. He is the winner of Sport in Society and North-eastern University School of Journalism’s ‘Excellence in Sports Journalism’ Award, and has been called “the best sportswriter in the United States,” by Robert Lipsyte. Zirin is also the host of Sirius XM Radio’s popular weekly show, Edge of Sports Radio.

      Dave Zirin knows sports and he knows about social justice.

Following the talk: A panel at which students comment on the presentation and Dave Zirin responds (Shea 101, 2:00-3:00 pm)

Co-sponsored by the Departments of Kinesiology and Political Science, the Race and Gender Project, the Women's Center, the Latin American and Latino/a Studies Program, the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, the College of Education, the Cotsakos College of Business, and the Office of the Provost


Thinking About Careers in Social Justice?

On March 27, 2014, the Gandhian Forum and the WPU Career Development Center sponsored a program on social justice careers.

Click here for details


The Gandhian Forum for Peace & Justice seeks to promote dialog and education on some of the greatest challenges that confront the human race in the 21st century: resolving conflicts, eliminating war, and advancing the cause of social justice. We hope that we can help make this campus a place where such conversations flourish, and a catalyst for encouraging engagement with these concerns in the wider community.

See our mission statement.

High School Peace and Justice Writing Contest  

  In February 2013, the Gandhian Forum for Peace and Justice invited high school students in the city of Paterson to participate in a peace and justice writing contest. The contest offered high school students an opportunity to reflect on important contemporary social problems and their solutions, and share those reflections in a public setting.

         Students were asked to submit by April 16 an essay of not more than 1,500 words on one of three topics:

  1. Choose some international conflict. Describe the conflict and propose a peaceful solution. Explain why your solution would be just and achievable.
  2. Choose a country in which some social injustice is occurring. Describe the problem and propose a solution. Explain why your solution would be just and achievable.
  3. Choose some situation in the United States— whether in your local community, New Jersey, or nationwide—where citizens are experiencing social injustice. Describe the problem and propose a solution. Explain why your solution would be just and achievable.

         Submissions were judged in two categories: 1) 9th and 10th graders, and 2) 11th and 12th graders.

         Within each category, three winning essays and an honorable mention were selected. The winning essays were read at a dinner at William Paterson University on June 10, 2013. All eight essays are linked below.

         Congratulations to our winners!

RESULTS

9th and 10th grade contest

1st place
Jose Colon
10 grade, School of Information Technology at Eastside High School
Human Trafficking

2nd place
Farzana Z. Line
9 grade, International High School
Craving for Oil In Ecuador

3rd place
Stanley Tremols
10th grade, School of Information Technology at Eastside High School
Sex Trafficking

Honorable Mention
Trenice Brockington
10th grade, School of Information Technology at Eastside High School
Racial Profiling

11th and 12th grade contest

1st Place
Yasmin Angon
11th grade, International High School
The Dream Act Revolution

2nd Place
Secilia Flores
12th grade, School of Government and Public Administration at Eastside High School
Genetically Modified Food

3rd Place
Rodny Rodriguez
11th grade, School of Information Technology at Eastside High School
Child Labor

Honorable Mention
Briggitte Sanchez
12th grade, School of Government and Public Administration at Eastside High School
Immigration

 

If we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children. -- Gandhi

Peace symbolSee our list of resources on Gandhi, nonviolence, peace, and justice, including resources for teachers, academic and research links, and activist organizations.

Be the change that you want to see in the world. -- Gandhi

BooksSee our list of Suggested Readings on peace and justice.

See our list of WPU courses that substantially address issues of peace and justice.