They called him the 'angriest black man in America' . . . Celebrated and vilified the world over for his courageous but bitter fight to gain for millions of black men and women the equality and respect denied them by their white neighbours, Malcolm X inspired as many people in the United States as he caused to fear him. His remarkable autobiography, completed just before his murder in 1965, ranges from Omaha and Michigan to Harlem and Mecca, and tells of a young, disenfranchised man whose descent into drug addition, robbery and prison was only reversed by his belief in the rights struggle for black America, and his conversion to the Nation of Islam. Not only is this an enormously important record of the Civil Rights Movement in America, but also the scintillating story of a man who refused to allow anyone to tell him who or what he was.
Born Malcolm Little in Omaha in 1925, Malcolm X lost both his parents at a young age. Leaving school early, he soon became part of Harlem's underworld, and in 1946 he was sentenced to ten years' imprisonment. It was in prison that Malcolm X converted to Islam. Paroled in 1952, he became an outspoken defender of Muslim doctrines, formed the Organization of Afro-American Unity in 1963, and had received considerable publicity by the time of his murder in 1965.