Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Christian Karl Messenger  

Pen Name: None


Audience: Adult;

Born: East Orange, New Jersey

-- Christian Karl Messenger on WorldCat --

Illinois Connection

Christian Messenger is a Professor of American literature and cultural studies at the University of Illinois in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information


Published Works

  • Sport and the Spirit of Play in American Fiction, Hawthorne to Faulkner, Columbia University Press, 1983
  • Sport and the Spirit of Play in Contemporary American Fiction, Columbia University Press, 1990
  • Long Time Coming, A Black Athlete`s Coming of Age in America, Grove, 1995
  • The Godfather and American Culture: How the Corleones Became Our Gang, State University of New York Press, 2002

Selected Titles At Your Library

Sport and the spirit of play in American fiction :
ISBN: 0231051697. OCLC Number:

Columbia University Press,. New York :. 1981.

Sport and the spirit of play in contemporary American fiction /
ISBN: 0231070942. OCLC Number:

Columbia University Press,. New York :. ©1990.

The sequel to Messenger's (English, U. of Illinois at Chicago) Sport and the spirit of play in American fiction: Hawthorne to Faulkner. Covering the period since World War II, he considers over 100 novels, treating them thematically, with separate chapters on the fictions of boxing, football, baseball, and basketball. His theme--the drive toward individual freedom through sport.

Long time coming :
ISBN: 0802115047. OCLC Number:

Grove Press,. New York :. ©1995.

A college All-American at Bradley University (1959-62) and an NBA star for the Philadelphia 76ers and the Chicago Bulls (1962-75), Chet Walker was one of the first black athletes to gain celebrity status on the basketball court, coming into his own while the Civil Rights movement was sweeping the country. Now an Emmy Award-winning television and film producer, Chet Walker has written this eloquent and candid account of his illustrious sports career and the struggles, sacrifices, and successes - both personal and political - that have shaped his life. Here he describes the obligatory double consciousness of the black athlete, who must forgo political and social activism in exchange for status as a sports hero and cultural role model. A true team player who helped build two of the all-time great NBA teams, Walker describes the underside as well as the glory of that life, while giving us an intimate look into the conscience of a gifted, multitalented, and deeply thoughtful African-American. His basketball career ended not when his talent ran out but when his conscience told him it was time to no longer be "owned" by anyone.

The Godfather and American culture :
ISBN: 0791453588. OCLC Number:

State University of New York Press,. Albany :. ©2002.


Carl Sandburg Literary Award for Non-Fiction for `Sport and the Spirit of Play in America`.

Speaking Engagements

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