Essay about Malcolm X And The Civil Rights Movement

1702 Words Jan 26th, 2015 7 Pages
When one is reminded of the civil rights movement, the first man who comes to mind is generally Martin Luther King, Jr. He is regarded as the primary figure that supported the rights of not only blacks, but all racial minorities during American segregation. Much less known is the more radical Malcolm X, whose stinging words generated significant controversy throughout his years of black activism. His militant singularity and hateful messages offered a stark contrast to the peaceful King as he tried to gain freedom for African Americans at any cost. Malcolm X’s harshly straightforward yet idiomatic style of speech combined with his nationalistic ideals to instill a powerful sense of cultural unity. The beliefs of Malcolm X were a product of his environment; the discrimination and hardship he faced led him to seek any way of change possible. Born in Nebraska, he was subject to threats and harassment at a young age, as well as his father’s murder by whites. After dropping out from school, X became acquainted with street criminals and familiarized himself with the American prison system for seven years. During his time in prison, his life took on a new direction when he learned of and joined the Nation of Islam, with which he would be heavily associated with for much of his adult life (Siddiqi 4). It is here that he gained many of the beliefs he was known for by studying the ideas of Elijah Muhammad, who believed that whites actively worked to suppress the…

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