December 7, 2015 - 7:00pm
Prairie Lights

Sports Illustrated Senior Writer Alexander Wolff will show slides and talk about his new book, The Audacity of Hoop: Basketball and the Age of Obama. Wolff chronicles Obama’s love of the game from age 10, on the campaign trail —where it eventually took on talismanic meaning—and throughout his two terms in office. More than 125 photographs illustrate Obama dribbling, shooting free throws, playing pickup games, cooling off with George Clooney, challenging his special assistant Reggie Love for a rebound, and taking basketball to political meetings. There is also an assessment of Obama’s influence on the NBA, including a dawning political consciousness in the league’s locker rooms. Equal parts biographical sketch, political narrative, and cultural history, The Audacity of Hoop shows how the game became a touchstone in Obama’s exercise of the power of the presidency.  

Alexander Wolff is a senior writer at Sports Illustrated and the author of Big Game, Small World: A Basketball Adventure.

“The cool, the flow, the edge, the drive, the individual and the team, the black and white – all of that is Barack Obama, playing basketball, the American game. To those who consider the president a mystery, The Audacity of Hoop offers a key to understanding him, through Alex Wolff's fluid prose and Pete Souza's evocative photographs."—David Maraniss