Gerald Gems, North Central College professor of health and physical education, this spring released a book titled “Boxing: A Concise History of the Sweet Science,” published by Rowman & Littlefield.
In addition, his book titled “Sport and the Shaping of Italian American Identity” was one of five nonfiction books chosen as a spring 2014 title by the Sons of Italy National Book Club. This book club is dedicated to works on Italy and on Italian-American issues, themes and history. Gems’ book, along with the other nonfiction titles, and five fiction titles was reviewed in the spring 2014 issue of Italian America magazine, the most widely read publication in the United States for Italian Americans.
Alongside his writing, Gems also has delivered lectures and presentations this spring. In April he presented “From Vaudeville to Olympia: The Evolution of Women’s Boxing” at the combined conference of the Popular Culture Association and the American Culture Association in Chicago. In May, he gave a presentation on baseball history at Monarch Landing in Naperville. Also in May he presented “Football and the Conservative Clash with Modernity: Notre Dame vs. the Ku Klux Klan” at the North American Society for Sport History Conference at Glenwood Springs, Colo.
Gems has been a member of North Central College’s faculty since 1988. He earned his B.A. from Northeastern Illinois University, his M.S. from the University of Arizona and his Ph.D. from the University of Maryland.