(Al Hajj Malik Al-Habazz)
Malcolm X was born Malcolm Little on May 19, 1925 in Omaha, Nebraska. The Malcolm’s family had to move several timesbecause of racism. They left Omaha, Nebraska after they were threatened by the Ku Klux Klan. Their house was also burned down while living in an all-white neighborhood inMichigan.
Malcolm spent some time in foster homes (because his father died, and his mother was hospitalized) and ended up eventually living in Boston with hissister. After becoming addicted to cocaine, Malcolm committed a series of criminal acts. He was convicted to ten years in prison in 1946 for burglary. It was there thatMalcolm found the religion and converted to Muslim.
Malcolm in 1952 moved to Chicago. There he met Elijah Muhammad, the leader of the nation of Islam. He changedhis name to X as many of Muhammad’s followers did who considered their families to have originated from a white slaveholder. Malcolm soon became a Nation of Islam leaderand kept that position for almost ten years before he quit the organization in 1964 because of disagreements with Muhammad. He then became a Sunni Muslim.
On apilgrimage to Mecca, Malcolm disavowed racism and his former separatist beliefs. He began advocating world brotherhood and traveled all over Africa and the Middle East. Hefounded the Muslim Mosque, Inc., a religious organization, and also the Pan-Africanist Organization of Afro-American Unity. Malcolm rejected his former separatist beliefsand advocated world brotherhood.
Malcolm was shot and killed at a meeting in Harlem on February 21, 1965. Three black Muslims were later convicted of his murder.