Essay on Boxing Hit The American Shores

Essay on Boxing Hit The American Shores

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Since boxing hit the American shores it has been a testament to a mans speed, strength, and perseverance; underneath those visible things there is a layer of boxing culture that speaks about social norms, gender roles, and class stigmas. This can be seen very clearly whilst looking at Prize fighting in the 19th century. America was a changing community during this time period, industrialization was on the rise, Americans were forever looking for ways to separate themselves from their mother country, and people of all nationalities were flooding in. Prize fighting gave some the ability to deal with personal aggressions, while it gave others something to entertain them while off the clock. Looking through the lens provided for us in Gorn’s book, we can see that life in the 19th century was filled with tension due to class and ethnic divide, and also due to mass expansion of both the physical land and the population.
The 19th century brought people from across the globe to America. Many of them shared in the idea that America could offer them land, a stable home, income, and plenty of food. Though America was ripe with opportunity, many immigrants would find themselves included in the working class, not the upper class as they may have dreamed. Class lines were tied closely to ethnicity and upper class Americans not only looked down upon the working class because they were depraved but also because many of them were not “natives”. Prize fighting seemed to fit in among these lower class people, because it carried a negative connotation as well. Throughout the book Gorn suggests that the ring was viewed by upper and middle class citizens as “a symbol of depravity, or only a sport that the poor could enjoy.”
In the section ti...

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...usly been forced to hide in.
As always America and its perception of prize fighting would change. It would become a very popular sport in the years to follow. Gorn paints a vivid picture of what life was like in the early 19th century by allowing us to see how people felt about their communities, their incoming neighbors, and also those who constituted the working class of America. Not only can we see the intrapersonal relationships and ideals that formed over time but also how a group of people could bond together over similar misfortune. Prize-fighting may have started out as an illegal adopted tradition form the mother country but as Gorn points out in his book, it would become an American sport because it portrays all the ideals that Americans held dear; strength, perseverance, the will to get up, and the ability to keep fighting for what you believe in.

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