Sunday, October 11, 2020
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Among this year’s Revivals selections is a pair of intimate, rarely seen portraits of two towering figures of American history: Terrence Dixon’s Meeting the Man: James Baldwin in Paris and William Klein’s Muhammad Ali, the Greatest. In capturing the tensions experienced by both Baldwin and Ali as outspoken Black public figures in the ’70s, the films raise questions that are strikingly relevant to the present moment. Can artists and athletes act as political—perhaps even revolutionary—agents of change? And what are the double binds faced, in particular, by Black artists and athletes in the public eye? This roundtable brings together Soraya Nadia McDonald (critic, The Undefeated); Rich Blint (professor and writer, The New School); Samantha Sheppard (professor, Cornell University; author, Sporting Blackness); and Kazembe Balagun (project manager, Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung—New York Office) to reflect on these timely themes. Moderated by writer Nicholas Russell.