Who Was Jackie Robinson?

Who Was Jackie Robinson?

As a kid, Jackie Robinson loved sports. And why not? He was a natural at football, basketball, and, of course, baseball. But beyond athletic skill, it was his strength of character that secured his place in sports history. In 1947 Jackie joined the Brooklyn Dodgers, breaking the long-time color barrier in major league baseball. It was tough being first- not only did "fans" send hate mail but some of his own teammates refused to accept him. Here is an inspiring sports biography, with black-and-white illustrations throughout.

Jackie Robinson

A Biography

Jackie Robinson

The extraordinary life of Jackie Robinson is illuminated as never before in this full-scale biography by Arnold Rampersad, who was chosen by Jack's widow, Rachel, to tell her husband's story, and was given unprecedented access to his private papers. We are brought closer than we have ever been to the great ballplayer, a man of courage and quality who became a pivotal figure in the areas of race and civil rights. Born in the rural South, the son of a sharecropper, Robinson was reared in southern California. We see him blossom there as a student-athlete as he struggled against poverty and racism to uphold the beliefs instilled in him by his mother--faith in family, education, America, and God. We follow Robinson through World War II, when, in the first wave of racial integration in the armed forces, he was commissioned as an officer, then court-martialed after refusing to move to the back of a bus. After he plays in the Negro National League, we watch the opening of an all-American drama as, late in 1945, Branch Rickey of the Brooklyn Dodgers recognized Jack as the right player to break baseball's color barrier--and the game was forever changed. Jack's never-before-published letters open up his relationship with his family, especially his wife, Rachel, whom he married just as his perilous venture of integrating baseball began. Her memories are a major resource of the narrative as we learn about the severe harassment Robinson endured from teammates and opponents alike; about death threats and exclusion; about joy and remarkable success. We watch his courageous response to abuse, first as a stoic endurer, then as a fighter who epitomized courage and defiance. We see his growing friendship with white players like Pee Wee Reese and the black teammates who followed in his footsteps, and his embrace by Brooklyn's fans. We follow his blazing career: 1947, Rookie of the Year; 1949, Most Valuable Player; six pennants in ten seasons, and 1962, induction into the Hall of Fame. But sports were merely one aspect of his life. We see his business ventures, his leading role in the community, his early support of Martin Luther King Jr., his commitment to the civil rights movement at a crucial stage in its evolution; his controversial associations with Eisenhower, Kennedy, Nixon, Humphrey, Goldwater, Nelson Rockefeller, and Malcolm X. Rampersad's magnificent biography leaves us with an indelible image of a principled man who was passionate in his loyalties and opinions: a baseball player who could focus a crowd's attention as no one before or since; an activist at the crossroads of his people's struggle; a dedicated family man whose last years were plagued by illness and tragedy, and who died prematurely at fifty-two. He was a pathfinder, an American hero, and he now has the biography he deserves. From the Hardcover edition.

Jackie Robinson

Race, Sports, and the American Dream

Jackie Robinson

There are defining moments in the life of a nation when a single individual can shape events for generations to come. For America, the spring of 1947 was such a moment, and Jackie Robinson was the man who made the difference. With these words, President Clinton contributed to Long Island University's three-day celebration of that momentous event in American history when Robinson became the first African American to play major league baseball. This new book includes presentations from that celebration, especially chosen for their fresh perspectives and illuminating insights. A heady mix of journalism, scholarship, and memory offers a presentation that far transcends the retelling of just another sports story. Readers get a true sense of the social conditions prior to Robinson's arrival in the major leagues and the ripple effect his breakthrough had on the nation. Anecdotes enliven the story and offer more than the usual larger than life portrait of Robinson. Contributors from the sports world, academia, and journalism, some of Robinson's contemporaries, Dodger fans, and historians of the era, all sharing a passion for baseball, reflect on issues of sports, race, and the dramatic transformation of the American social and political scene in the last fifty years. In addition to the editors, the list of authors includes Peter Golenbock, one of America's preeminent sports biographers and author of Bums: The Brooklyn Dodgers, 1947-1957, Tom Hawkins, the first African-American to star in basketball at Notre Dame and currently Vice-President for Communications of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Bill Mardo a former writer for the New York Daily Worker, Roger Rosenblatt, teacher at the Southampton Campus of Long Island University, and author of numerous articles, plays, and books, Peter Williams, author of a study of sports myth, The Sports Immortals, and Samuel Regalado, author of Viva Baseball!: Latin Major Leaguers and Their Special Hunger.

Jackie Robinson: American Hero

Jackie Robinson: American Hero

Just in time for the major motion picture release, discover everything you wanted to know about Jackie Robinson! To tie- in with the April 2013 release of the movie 42, the life story of Jackie Robinson, this full-color comprehensive biography will feature everything there is to know about this inspiring American hero. The movie, featuring high-profile actors such as Harrison Ford, Christopher Meloni, and T.R. Knight, explores Robinson's history-making signing with the Brooklyn Dodgers under the guidance of team executive Branch Rickey. The biography will explore what led up to Robinson's signing and what happened after. As the first black man to play major league baseball, his progress monumentally influenced the desegregation of baseball. Because of this, Robinson became an icon for not only the sport of baseball, but also for the civil -rights movement. Featuring photos throughout, this biography will be a sports tale and a history lesson. It will coincide with the movie and also provide many more Robinson details, introducing him to a new generation of readers.

Jackie Robinson

A Biography

Jackie Robinson

Profiles the first African American to play baseball in the Major League.

Jackie Robinson

Breaking the Color Line in Baseball

Jackie Robinson

Highlights the life and career of an American baseball player who became the first African American to play major league baseball in the modern era.

Jackie Robinson

Baseball's First Black Major Leaguer

Jackie Robinson

Young children can now enjoy a biography series written just for them. Short, easy-to-read text, historical photos, and eye-catching illustrations introduce the beginning reader to interesting people who helped shape history. Includes timeline.

Jackie Robinson: My Own Story

Jackie Robinson: My Own Story

Autobiography of baseball legend Jackie Robinson, beginning with his athletic career and dealing particularly with baseball and the first step toward equal participation by African Americans in this great sport. “I believe that a man’s race, color, and religion should never constitute a handicap. The denial to anyone, anywhere, any time of equality of opportunity to work is incomprehensible to me. Moreover, I believe that the American public is not as concerned with a first baseman’s pigmentation as it is with the power of his swing, the dexterity of his slide, the gracefulness of his fielding, or the speed of his legs.”—From Foreword by Branch Hickey

Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson became the first African American Major League Baseball player, and the story of how he broke baseball's color barrier brings the worlds of sports and history together. How was he chosen to break this barrier, and what struggles did he have to face once he joined the Brooklyn Dodgers? These questions and many more are answered through age-appropriate text, including sidebars that provide additional information about this member of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Graphic organizers and photographs enhance the exciting story of a man whose groundbreaking career continues to inspire athletes around the world.

Jackie Robinson

An Integrated Life

Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson’s story is not only a compelling drama of heroism, but also as a template of the African American freedom struggle. A towering athletic talent, Robinson’s greater impact was on preparing the way for the civil rights reform wave following WWII. But Robinson’s story has always been far more complex than the public perception has allowed. Brooklyn Dodgers executive Branch Rickey famously told the young Robinson that he was “looking for a ballplayer with guts enough not to fight back.” J. Christopher Schutz reveals the real Robinson, as a more defiant, combative spirit than simply the “turn the other cheek” compliant “credit to his race.” The triumph of Robinson’s inclusion in the white Major Leagues (which presaged blacks’ later inclusion in the broader society) also included the slow demise of black-owned commercial enterprise in the Negro Leagues (which likewise presaged the unrecoverable loss of other important black institutions after civil rights gains). Examining this key figure at the crossroads of baseball and civil rights histories, Schutz provides a cohesive exploration of the man and the times that made him great.