Muhammad Ali was a champion, a poet, a prophet. Sports Illustrated called him “the greatest athlete of the twentieth century.” And yet he was even more than all of that, “a whole greater than the sum of its parts...bigger, brighter, more original and influential than just about anyone of his era” (Barack Obama). He got there with his fists, with his actions, and above all, with his words.
Compiled and written by his daughter Hana Ali, with sportswriter Danny Peary, Ali on Ali brings together a remarkable mix of Ali’s 70 most humorous, poignant, inspirational, political, and philosophical quotes, all with their origins. Here’s Ali’s enduring boast, “I am the greatest!” — and how it was inspired by professional wrestler Gorgeous George.
The story behind one of the most memorably poetic lines of the century — “Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee.” The heard-round-the-world defiance of “I ain’t got no quarrel with them Viet Cong,” and its moving context. And the stories behind quotes ranging from outrage — “We been in jail for 400 years,” to inspiration — “I hated every minute of training, but I said ‘Don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion,’” to that infectious combination of humour and bravado — “If you even dream of beating me you better wake up and apologize.”
About the Author
Included are powerful photographs throughout, from iconic fight scenes to never-before-seen Ali family snapshots; quotes about Ali, from Martin Luther King Jr. to Billy Crystal; a career timeline; and a personal introduction by Hana Ali.
Hana Ali is the daughter of Muhammad Ali and sister of boxer Laila Ali. Hana has written More Than a Hero
, published by Pocket Books, and coauthored with her father The Soul of a Butterfly,
published by Simon and Schuster. She is a freelance writer for CNN and has appeared on the Oprah Winfrey Show and in documentaries, including Muhammad Ali Through the Eyes of the World.