Photo courtesy of NC State Live
Marc Bamuthi Joseph
By now, our region's college sports fans are acutely aware—or at least, they should be—of the ethical complexities and complicities of rooting for their favorite team: the tinge of neocolonial exploitation that taints an endeavor in which everyone gets paid except the players, a generation-long academic scandal and cover-up, and the convenient myopia of supposed regulatory groups. Marc Bamuthi Joseph knows our pain. In /peh-LO-tah/ (the pronunciation of the Spanish word for "ball"), the nationally renowned Haitian-American writer, dancer, and performer probes his complicated lifelong love affair with soccer. In a work that has been compared to Ta-Nehisi Coates's Between the World and Me, Joseph considers the parallels of playing soccer, the process of aging, the experience of immigrants, and being black in America.