Triumph: The Untold Story of Jesse Owens and Hitler's Olympics delves into the perfect opportunity for Hitler to showcase his idiotic ideal that “Aryans” were superior to other races, an opportunity completely ruined by the stellar performance of an American - an African American, at that.
Jeremy Schaap does an excellent job researching and explaining the very real racism that was present despite the Nazis attempt to hide the already-rampant persecution of the Jews.
Despite being the most legendary athlete of his time, Owens still faced the racism prevalent in America at that time. He was not idealized as athletes are today. As an African American, he still had to deal with separate bathrooms and seats at the back of the bus.
It’s sad to realize that Owens has somewhat faded from the consciousness of American athletics. His physical accomplishments entitle him to permanent top athlete status; his ripping the mask off Hitler’s racist ideology should put him in the category of all the other African American athletes who have shattered race barriers.
Schaap delves into extraordinary but long-forgotten incidents that are far too important to be left to langor in the dust of history. Pick Triumph up if you like sports, history, or hearing about an American sticking it to the megalomaniacal monster known as Hitler.