Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention

Front Cover
Penguin Books Limited, Apr 4, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 592 pages
29 Reviews
Of the figures who tower over twentieth century American history, perhaps none is more complex, more multifaceted and controversial, than Malcolm X. Constantly rewriting his own story, he became a criminal, a minister, a leader, and eventually an icon, eventually assassinated at the age of 39. The details of his life have long since calcified into a familiar narrative: his early years as a vagabond in Boston and New York, his conversion to Islam and subsequent rise to prominence as a militant advocate for black rights, his acrimonious split with the Nation of Islam, and ultimately his violent death at their hands. Yet this story, told and retold to various ends by writers, historians, and filmmakers, captures only a snapshot, a fraction of the man in full.
To truly understand Malcolm, we need to go deeper, to find the source of his voluminous rage and charisma. Manning Marable's new biography of Malcolm is a stunning achievement, the culmination of years of research and dogged pursuit of those who knew him, many of whom have never before spoken about him on the record. Filled with new information and shocking revelations that will reframe the way we understand his life and work, Malcolm X unfolds a sweeping story of the darkest days of racial unrest, from the rise of the Ku Klux Klan to the struggles of the civil rights movement. Marable reaches deep into Malcolm's troubled youth, tracing a path from the activism of his Garveyite parents through his own engagement with the Nation of Islam, and examining the romantic relationships whose energy alternately drained him and pushed him to unimagined heights.
Malcolm X will stand as the definitive work on one of the most important figures in the history of civil rights, surpassing previous treatments in its depth and intensity, and capturing with revelatory clarity a man who constantly strove, in the great American tradition, to remake himself anew.

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Review: Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention

User Review  - peter - Goodreads

A deeply researched and eminently readable biography. Marable has laid out the potential spaces for fiction and fact in the Autobiography. While it is possible to see this as a salacious book, I would ... Read full review

Review: Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention

User Review  - Maughn Gregory - Goodreads

For me, the most important thing about this book is that to read it is to discipline one's hero-worship into practical aspiration for self- and social struggle, because we see the hero as an ordinary ... Read full review

About the author (2011)

Manning Marable was Professor of History and Political Science at Columbia University and director of the Institute for Research in African-American Studies. He was the founding director of the Center for Contemporary Black History, established in 2002 and the Institute for Research in African-American Studies, where he served from 1993 to 2003. He died as the hardback of Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention was published. The book was a Finalist for the National Book Award 2011.

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