Malcolm X : An African American Civil Rights Movement Essay

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Malcolm X 's actions as a leader are both opposed and celebrated, due to his villainous portrayal as a drug-dealing criminal versus a courageous and principled freedom fighter. Malcolm X was an African American civil rights activist and prominent figure in the Nation of Islam. A hero of the civil rights movement of the late 1950s and 1960s, he was known over the course of his life as Detroit Red, Malcolm X most famously, and finally as El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz. Assessing the legacy of his leadership is complex as throughout Malcolm X’s life his attitude to civil rights and the best methods of achieving them changed and much of his testament is viewed through the lense of his Islamic beliefs. Perspective is important in deciding whether Malcolm X was heroic or villainous. If viewed obe

Malcolm X, born Malcolm Little, was born in Omaha, Nebraska, in 1925. In 1929 his family’s home is burned to the ground. In 1931, his father, Earl Little, was found dead on the town’s trolley tracks and in 1937 Malcolm X’s mother is committed to a mental institution. At age fifteen he quit school and moved to Boston upon the invitation of his older half-sister, Ella Little. In January 1946 he received a ten-year sentence in the Massachusetts prison system for armed robbery. While in prison he converts to the Nation of Islam (NOI). The NOI was a controversial religious movement and organisation led by Elijah Muhammad which combined elements of orthodox Islam with black nationalism and was…

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