Hoop Roots by John Edgar Wideman

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A multilayered memoir of basketball, family, home, love, and race, John Edgar Wideman"s Hoop Roots brings "a touch of Proust to the blacktop" (Time) as it tells of the author's love for a game he can no longer play. Beginning with the scruffy backlot playground he discovered in Pittsburgh some fifty years ago, Wideman works magical riffs that connect black music, language, culture, and sport. His voice modulates from nostalgic to outraged, from scholarly to streetwise, in describing the game that has sustained his passion throughout his life.

About John Edgar Wideman

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John Edgar Wideman won the PEN/Faulkner Award in 1984 for Sent for You Yesterday and in 1990 for Philadelphia Fire. His second memoir, Fatheralong, was a finalist for the National Book Award. His most recent books are Hoop Roots and The Island: Martinique. He teaches at Brown University.
Published October 1, 2001 by Houghton Mifflin Co.
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Sports & Outdoors. Non-fiction

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Kirkus Reviews

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Probing his memories and childhood for a larger meaning, as he did in such previous memoirs as Fatheralong (1994), Wideman focuses on basketball as a thread that ties together his past and present.

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Publishers Weekly

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In this rambling but consistently challenging work, Wideman turns his wise, analytical eye on such topics as male privilege, interracial love, violence among young black men, the marketing of Michael Jordan and the basketball court as a classroom where men learn skills that will serve them in the...

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Star Tribune

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An acclaimed author examines the way playground hoops and race have affected his life and American culture.

Nov 24 2001 | Read Full Review of Hoop Roots


, John Edgar Wideman's new memoir about the aesthetics of basketball, may be one of the best books ever written about the sport, as deft and breathlessly poetic as a Michael Jordan fadeaway jumper.

Jan 16 2017 | Read Full Review of Hoop Roots

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