Welcome back to the Barrett Book Club! By now you should know the deal, so here is the book for the May discussion, which will be held on May 26th!
Unfortunately, this is one of those that is a bit harder to find. Right now there are a bunch of used copies on Amazon that aren’t badly priced. If I come across a copy to loan out I will let you know!
In the meantime, if you’ve read it or are reading it, feel free to let us know your discussion questions!
The official discussion questions are here! What I happen to love about these is even if you did not find a copy of the book, these are still questions with a lot of thought that can bring you into the discussion.
Discussion questions for the @BarrettBookClub May selection, “King of the Gypsies” by Bartley Gorman:
1) “King of the Gypsies” Bartley Gorman was lucky to survive being attacked by a bloodthirsty mob in 1976. Stuart Bennett – now better known as WWE wrestler Wade Barrett – survived a back-alley attempt on his life in Budapest after winning a particularly hyped bareknuckle fight in his 20s. The attack on Gorman was for personal revenge and the one on Barrett was for his 20,000 pounds in winnings. Do you think making bareknuckle fighting legal would realistically reduce the danger of mobs, riots, and murder attempts? Do you think that bareknuckle fighting would lose its allure if it were legalized? Discuss anything else regarding the legalization of bareknuckle fighting you think is important or interesting.
2) Do you believe that Wade Barrett, in his prime as a bareknuckle fighter, could have beaten Bartley Gorman in his prime? Why or why not?
3) It is clear that Gorman believes Gypsy men before the 1990s were the world’s best bareknuckle fighters because it was part of Gypsy culture with social rules and honor attached to it. He comments near the end of the book about Gypsy culture having changed for the worse regarding crime – especially murder – and how that may kill off bareknuckle fighting. That was back in 2002. Britain was declared the violent crime capital of Europe in 2009, with the violent crime rate there being even worse than the U.S. Do you think Gorman is correct? Is the “golden age” of Gypsy bareknuckle fighting probably over because people are too violent to stick to the social rules governing it, or do those statistics even apply to Gypsies, who often solve their problems without the police or courts?
4) Which fighter, from any background (UFC/MMA, boxing, martial arts) do you wish Bartley had fought?
5) What opinion did you come away with of Bartley Gorman, Gypsy culture and bareknuckle fighting?
6) Are there any future selections you would like to see the Book Club feature? Please let me know at @BarrettBookClub on twitter.