In the 1930s, Joe Louis and Max Schmeling were head-to-head in two of boxing’s most memorable and controversial fights ever. Schmeling won the first match by a knockout in round twelve, but in the second match, Louis won through a knockout in the first round. Although the two champions met to create a pugilistic spectacle remarkable on its own terms, the two fights came to embody the broader political and social conflict of the times.
As the most significant African American athlete of his age and the most significant African American boxer since Jack Johnson, Louis was a focal point for African American pride in the 1930s. Moreover, as a contest between representatives of the United States and Nazi Germany during the 1930s, the fights came to symbolize the struggle between democracy and Nazism. Louis' performance in the bouts made him one of the first true African American national heroes in the United States. Both Louis and Schmeling have since become members of the International Boxing Hall of Fame.
In this book based on the film Joe and Max (2002), you will find various significant scenes that help embody the story of both Louis and Schmeling. Along with the photos, you will find descriptions alongside to help illustrate the scenes and their relevance to the real story.