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Malcolm X: A Brief Biography

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S: Malcolm X: Brief Biography

FC: Malcolm X: A Brief Biography | By: Ria Johnson

1: Malcolm X, was born Malcolm Little on May 19, 1925 in Omaha, Nebraska to mother Louise Norton Little, a homemaker who occupied her family of eight children and father Earl Little an outspoken Baptist Minister who was an avid supporter of Black Nationalist Leader Marcus Garvey. | During Malcolm X's childhood and adulthood, he witnessed and experienced the harshness of racism, discrimination, and violence from white supremacists. In 1929, Malcolm's home in Lansing, Michigan was burned down and two years later his father was murdered. Malcolm's mother, Louise had an emotional breakdown several years after the death of her husband and was committed to a mental institution. Her children were split among various foster homes and orphanages.

2: Malcolm was a smart, focused student that graduated from junior high at the top of his class. However, when his favorite teacher told him that being a lawyer was not a realistic goal for a Negro, he lost interest in school.

3: In 1946, Malcolm and his buddy Malcolm "Shorty" Jarvis were arrested for burglary and sentenced to seven years in prison. While in prison, Malcolm furthered his education. | Also while in prison, Malcolm became intrigued and studied the teachings of Nation of Islam leader, Elijah Muhammad. By the time he was paroled in 1952, Malcolm was a devoted follower of the Nation of Islam with the new surname "X." He considered "Little" a slave name and chose the "X" to signify his lost tribal name.

5: Intelligent and articulate, Malcolm was appointed as the national spokesperson for the Nation of Islam. Elijah Muhammad charged him in establishing mosques in Detroit, Michigan and Harlem, New York. Malcolm X utilized newspaper columns, radio, and television to communicate the messages of the Nation of Islam. Malcolm is largely credited with increasing the membership in the Nation of Islam from 500 in 1952 to 30,000 in 1963.

6: In 1957, Malcolm X met a young student nurse in New York named Betty who had shortly became a member of the Black Muslims. They married in 1958 and had six daughters.

7: At a speaking engagement in Manhattan's Audubon Ballroom on February 21, 1965, Malcolm X was shot and killed by three gunmen. 1500 people attended his funeral in Harlem at Faith Temple Church of God in Christ on February 27, 1965. He is buried at the Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York.

8: "The future belongs to those who prepare for it today" -Malcolm X

9: Words and People to Know Marcus Garvey- a Black social activist who was dedicated to promoting African Americans and resettlement in Africa. White supremacist- an advocate or believer in white people being superior than all other groups of people. Mosque- a building used for public worship for Muslims. Avid- eager, determined, enthusiastic. Intrigued- strongly interested. Surname- an added name.

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  • By: Ria J.
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  • Title: Malcolm X: A Brief Biography
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