Join APT as we salute our 2021 U.S. Olympic team in August with documentaries on four great athletes whose stories also help set the stage for Ken Burns’ Muhammad Ali premiering in September.
First at bat is Ken Burns’ Jackie Robinson, Robinson rose from humble origins to cross baseball’s color line and become one of the most beloved men in America. He used his immense fame to speak out against the discrimination he saw on and off the field.
AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: Jesse Owens. The 22-year-old son of an Alabama sharecropper, Owens stunning triumph at the 1936 Olympic Games captivated the world and infuriated the Nazis.
AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: The Fight. On June 22, 1938, Alabama’s Joe Louis squared off against German Max Schmeling for the heavyweight championship of the world. In the shadow of war, the two became reluctant symbols of equality and supremacy, democracy and fascism.
Later this month, Ken Burns’ Unforgivable Blackness tells the story of Jack Johnson, the first African American Heavyweight Champion of the world. Johnson’s dominance over white opponents spurred furious debates and race riots. Tune in or stream broadcasts on Mondays, Aug 23 & 30 at 9pm.
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