Andrew Maraniss’ Biography of Perry Wallace Discusses Basketball, Race, Social Justice, and Much More

Sports journalist Andrew Maraniss is the author of New York Times bestselling book Strong Inside, the powerful biography of basketball legend and civil rights figure Perry Wallace. Maraniss provided an introduction to his book and to Wallace himself in a recent opinion piece for Vanderbilt magazine.

Author Andrew Maraniss

Author Andrew Maraniss

Perry Wallace was the first African American basketball player in the Southeastern Conference. In 1970, he was run out of town just one day after his final game for Vanderbilt. Wallace fled the South after speaking to The Tennessean about his experiences of racism on campus, in the South, and in the SEC.

Maraniss attended Vanderbilt on a sports writing scholarship twenty years after Wallace’s infamous interview. He was captivated by Wallace’s story because it captured his loves of sports as well as history. Maranis first interviewed Wallace while still a student at Vanderbilt, yet didn’t decide to write a book about Wallace as a civil rights figure until many years later.

Maraniss is as powerful a speaker as he is a writer. To invite him to talk at your next event, contact Books In Common.

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