Muhammad Ali is the boxing legend who shook his generation and changed what it meant to be black, bold and fearless.

After a three decade-long battle with Parkinson’s disease, he passed away on Friday at the age of 74. Since then, people have used social media platforms to share tweets, images and videos mourning his loss and celebrating a life well spent.

Aside from his important commentary on racial dynamics in the United States, Muhammad Ali also crucially embodied the meaning of Pan-Africanism, using his voice and platform to speak up in defense of African nations, show pride in his African heritage and identify himself as an African.

He has been described in this article as the first true  “African” American. He was a source of inspiration to Africans across the continent. It is, therefore, not surprising that the Nelson Mandela Foundation has, since Mandela’s death, acknowledged Muhammad Ali as the late leader’s “hero.”

For Africans across the globe, his death is personal. As we mourn his passing, we take comfort in the indelible marks he’s left upon our hearts and the world at large.

Here are some tweets from African writers mourning the loss of the much-loved and revered icon:






And here are a few tweets insisting on an accurate representation of his legacy:









Muhammad Ali will never be forgotten. May his soul Rest in Peace.



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About Tiwaladeoluwa Adekunle

View all posts by Tiwaladeoluwa Adekunle
Tiwaladeoluwa Adekunle is a creative writer and a student of International Studies and English. Some of her work has been published by Shale, Limestone, Indiana Review and Brittle Paper. She is passionate about language, stories and Chipotle, and would almost always rather be writing.

One Response to “Our Ali: African Writers Reflect on Icon Muhammad Ali’s Legacy” Subscribe

  1. Bami 2016/06/08 at 1:40 pm #

    Wow what a legacy. He will be greatly missed. Props to the writer this is elegantly written. Rest in peace Muhammad Ali.

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I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

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