Essay on Malcolm X Prison Studies

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Do you know who Malcolm X is? A lot of people don't. But I am going to teach you about his life.

Malcolm Little, better known as Malcolm X was born on May 19, 1925, in Omaha, Nebraska. He was the fourth of eight children. His parents were Earl Little and Loise Helen Norton Little. He and his family were harassed by the Klu Klux Klan. The harassment continued for a while. Earl Little, his father, moved his family to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, in 1926. Then they moved to Lansing, Michigan, in 1928. Shortly after they moved to Michigan in 1929, a racist mob set Malcolm’s house on fire. 'The white police and firemen came and stood around watching as the house burned to the ground,' Malcolm X later remembered. In 1931, his father’s dead body was found lying across municipal streetcar tracks. Malcolm X’s mother never recovered from the shock and grief over Earl’s death. She was committed to a mental health institution in 1937. He and his siblings were split between foster homes.

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Malcolm attended Mason High School, and he excelled in his classes. In 1939, his English teacher asked him what he wanted to be when he grew up, and his response was a lawyer. His teacher responded, 'One of life's first needs is for us to be realistic ... you need to think of something you can be ... why don't you plan on carpentry?' He dropped out of school the following year.

In 1946, Malcolm and his friend, Malcolm “Shorty” Jarvis, were arrested and convicted of burglary. They were sentenced to 10 years in prison. Malcolm got paroled after 7 years. He used those years in prison devouring the books from the prison library to make up for the school years he missed. He was visited frequently by his brother who had recently joined the Nation of Islam (NOI). Due to the constant visits from his brother, he became intrigued and started studying the teachings of NOI leader Elijah Muhammad. In 1952, Malcolm became a devoted follower with his new surname (last name) X. He considered Little a slave name and chose X to show his lost tribal name.

Malcolm was appointed as a minister and national spokesman for the NOI. Elijah Muhammad charged him with establishing new mosques in cities such as Detroit, Michigan, and Harlem, New York. He spread the NOI’s message across the United States. Due to the efforts of Malcolm X, the Nation of Islam grew from a mere 400 members at the time he was released from prison in 1952, to 40,000 members by 1960. Malcolm left the Nation of Islam in 1964, due to feelings of betrayal and differences of opinion with Elijah Muhammad, who was angered over Malcolm’s comments on the assassination of John F. Kennedy. That year, he performed Hajj. It is a traditional pilgrimage that Muslims do to Makkah, Saudi Arabia. During his trip, he converted to mainstream Islam and changed his name again to El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz.

On February 21, 1965, Malcolm X was on stage for a speech at the Audubon Ballroom in Manhattan. He had just begun addressing the room when people started shooting him. He was found dead after that. The people who shot him were angry NOI members, and they were sentenced to life in prison.

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Essay on Malcolm X Prison Studies. (2023, December 13). Edubirdie. Retrieved June 21, 2024, from https://edubirdie.com/examples/essay-on-malcolm-x-prison-studies/
“Essay on Malcolm X Prison Studies.” Edubirdie, 13 Dec. 2023, edubirdie.com/examples/essay-on-malcolm-x-prison-studies/
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Essay on Malcolm X Prison Studies [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2023 Dec 13 [cited 2024 Jun 21]. Available from: https://edubirdie.com/examples/essay-on-malcolm-x-prison-studies/
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