Books by & About Malcolm X
The Man and His Times /
Seventh Child: A Family Memoir of Malcolm X
Martin and Malcolm and America
Ghosts in Our Blood: With Malcolm X in Africa, England, and the
The Black Muslims in America
The Autobiography of Malcolm X /
Malcolm X Speaks /
By Any Means Necessary
February 1965: The Final Speeches
* * * * *
and Civil Rights
x: … I know the time is near when the white man
will be finished. The signs are all around us. Ten
years ago you couldn’t have paid a Southern Negro to defy
local customs. The British Lion’s tail has been snatched
off in black Africa. The Indonesians have booted out such
would-be imperialists as the Dutch. The French, who felt
for a century that Algeria was theirs, have had to run for their
lives back to France. Sir, the point I make is that all
over the world, the old day of standing in fear and trembling
before the almighty white man is gone!
You refer to whites as the guilty and the enemy; you predict
divine retribution against them; you preach absolute separation
from the white community. Do
not these views substantiate that
your movement is predicated on race hatred?
x: … The Honorable Elijah Muhammad doesn’t teach
hate. The white man’s isn’t important enough for the
Honorable Elijah Muhammad and his followers to spend any time
hating him. The
white man has brainwashed himself into believing that all the
black people in the world want to be cuddled up next to him. . .
. When we tell him we
don’t want to be around him, we don’t want to be like he is,
he’s staggered. It
makes him re-evaluate his three-hundred-year myth about the
black man. What I
want to know is how the white man, with the blood of black
people dripping off his fingers, can have the audacity to be
asking black people do they hate him.
That takes a lot of nerve.
How do you reconcile your disavowal of hatred with the
announcement you made last year that Allah had brought you
“the good news” that one hundred and twenty white Atlantans
has just been killed in an air crash en route to America from
x: Sir, as I see the law of justice, it says as you
sow, so shall you reap. . . . We
Muslims believe that the white race, which is guilty of having
oppressed and exploited and enslaved our people here in America,
should and will be the victims of God’s divine wrath.
All civilized societies in their courts of justice set a
sentence of execution against those deemed to be enemies of
society, such as murderers and kidnapers.
The presence of twenty million black people here in
America is proof that Uncle Sam is guilty of kidnapping—because
we didn’t come here voluntarily on the Mayflower.
And four hundred years of lynching condemn Uncle Sam as a
murderer. . . .
Many white religious leaders have also gone on record
against the Black Muslims.
Writing in the official NAACP magazine, a Catholic priest
described you as “a fascist-minded hate group,” and B’nai
B’rith has accused you of being not only anti-Christian but
you consider this true?
x: Insofar as the Christian world is concerned,
dictatorships have existed only in areas or countries where you
have Roman Catholicism. Catholicism conditions your mind for dictators.
Can you think of a single Protestant country that has
ever produced a dictator? . . . .
Where did fascism start?
Where’s the second-largest Communist party outside of
Russia? The answer to both is Italy.
Where is the Vatican? . . . .
Let me say just a word
about the Jew and the black man.
The Jew is always anxious to advise the black man.
But they never advise him how to solve the problem the
way the Jew solved their problem.
The Jew never went sitting in and crawling in and sliding
in and freedom-riding, like he teaches and helps Negroes to do.
The Jews stood up, and stood together, and they used
their ultimate power, the economic weapon.
That’s exactly what the
Honorable Elijah Muhammad is trying to teach black men to do.
The Jews pooled their money and bought the hotels
that barred them. They
bought Atlantic City and Miami Beach and anything else they
wanted. Who owns
Hollywood? Who runs
the garment industry, the largest industry in New York?
But the Jew that’s
advising the Negro joins the NAACP, CORE, the Urban League, and
others. When money
donations, the Jew gains control, then he sends the black man
doing all this wading in, boring in, even burying
in—everything but burying.
Never shows him how to set up factories and hotels.
Never advises how to own what he wants.
No, when there’s something worth owning, the Jew’s
Isn’t it true that many Gentiles have also labored with
dedication to advance integration and economic improvement for
the Negro, as volunteer workers for the NAACP, CORE, and many
other interracial agencies?
x: A man who tosses worms in the river isn’t
necessarily a friend of the fish.
All the fish who take him for a friend, who think the
worm got no hook in it, usually end up in the frying pan.
All of these things dangled before us by the white
liberal posing as a friend and benefactor have turned out to be
nothing but bait to make us think we’re making progress. The Supreme Court decisions have never been enforced.
Desegregation has never taken place.
The promises have never been fulfilled.
We have received only tokens, substitutes, trickery, and
You say that white men are devils by nature.
Was Christ a devil?
x: Christ wasn’t white.
Christ was a black man. . . .
Only the poor, brainwashed American Negro has been made
to believe that Christ was white, to maneuver him into
worshiping the white man. After
becoming a Muslim in prison, I read almost everything I could
put my hands on in the prison library.
I began to think back on everything I had read and
especially with the histories.
I realized that nearly all of them read by the general
public have been made into white histories.
I found out that the history-whitening process either had
left out great things that black men had done, or some of the
great black men had gotten whitened.
Would you list a few of these men?
x: Well, Hannibal, the most successful general that
ever lived, was a black man. So was Beethoven;
Beethoven’s father was one of the blackamoors, that hired
themselves out in Europe as professional soldiers. Havdn,
Beethoven’s teacher, was of African descent. Columbus,
the discoverer of America, was a half-black man. . . .
Whole black empires, like the Moorish, have been whitened to
hide the fact that a great black empire had conquered a white
empire even before America was discovered.
The Moorish civilization—black Africans—conquered and
ruled Spain; they kept the light burning in Southern Europe.
The word “Moor” means “black,” by the way.
Egyptian civilization is a
classic example of how the white man stole great African
cultures and makes them appear today as white European. .
. . The Incas, the Aztecs, the Mayans, all dark-skinned
Indian people, had a highly developed culture here in America,
in what is now Mexico and northern South America.
These people had mastered agriculture at the time when
European white people were still living in mud huts and eating
weeds. But white
children, or black children, or grownups here today in America
don’t get to read this in the average books they are exposed
to. . . .
[Do you regard the white race] as inferior in quality as
well as quantity to what you call the “black nation”?
x: Thoughtful white people know they are
inferior to black people. Even
Eastland knows it. Anyone
who has studied the genetic phase of biology knows that white is
considered recessive and black is considered dominant.
When you want it light, you want it weak, integrated with
white milk. Just
like these Negroes who weaken themselves and their race by this
integrating and intermixing with whites.
If you want bread with no nutritional value, you ask for
white bread. All
the good that was in it has been bleached out of it, and will
constipate you. If
you want pure flour, you ask for dark flour, whole-wheat flour.
If you want pure sugar, you want dark sugar.
If all whites are devilish by nature, as you have alleged, and
if black and white are essentially opposite, as you have just
stated, do you view all black men—with the exception of their
non-Muslim leaders—as fundamentally angelic?
x: No, there is plenty wrong Negroes.
They have no society.
They’re robots, automatons.
No minds of their own.
I hate to say that about us, but it’s the truth.
They are a black body with a white brain.
Like the monster Frankenstein.
The top part is your bourgeois Negro.
He’s your integrator.
He’s not interested in his poor black brothers.
He’s usually so deep in
debt from trying to copy the white man social habits that he
doesn’t have time to worry about nothing else.
They buy the most expensive clothes and cars and eat the
cheapest food. They
act more like the white man than the white man does himself.
These are the ones that hide their sympathy for Mr.
It conflicts with the
sources from which they get their white-man’s crumbs.
This class to us are the other eye on the Muslims.
They’ll jump whichever way they see the wind blowing.
Then there’s the middle class of the Negro masses, the
ones not in the ghetto, who realize that life is a struggle, who
are conscious of all the injustices being done and of the
constant state of insecurity in which they live.
They’re ready to take
some stand against everything that’s against them.
Now, when this group hears Mr. Muhammad’s teachings,
they are the ones who come forth faster and identify themselves,
and take immediate steps toward trying to bring into existence
what Mr. Muhammad advocates.
At the bottom of the social heap is the black man in the
big-city ghetto. He
lives night and day with the rats and cockroaches and drowns
himself with alcohol and anesthetizes himself with dope, to try
and forget where and what he is.
That Negro has given up all
hope. He’s the
hardest one for us to reach, because he’s the deepest in the
mud. But when you
get him, you’ve got the best kind of Muslim.
Because he makes the most drastic change.
He’s the most fearless.
He will stand the longest.
He has nothing to lose, even his life, because he
didn’t have that in the first place. …
Do you feel that the Administration’s successful stand on the
integration of James Meredith into the University of Mississippi
has demonstrated that the government—far from being
hypocritical—is sympathetic with the Negro’s aspirations for
x: What was accomplished?
It took 15,000 troops to put Meredith in the University
of Mississippi. Those
troops and $3,000,000—that’s what was spent—to get one
Negro in. That
$3,000,000 could have been used much more wisely by the federal
government to elevate the living standards of all the Negroes in
Has any American president, in your
opinion—Lincoln, FDR, Truman, Eisenhower,
Kennedy—accomplished anything for the Negro?
x: None of them have ever done anything for Negroes.
All of them have tricked the Negro, and made false
promises to him at election times which they never fulfilled.
Lincoln’s concern wasn’t freedom for the blacks but
to save the Union. …
Despite the fact that the goal of racial equality is not yet
realized, many sociologists—and many Negro
commentators—agree that no minority group on earth has made as
much social, civil, and economic progress as the American Negro
in the past one hundred years.
What is your reaction to this view?
x: . . . Every immigrant ethnic group that has come
to this country is now a genuinely first-class citizen
group—every one of them but the black man, who was here when
they came. … You
talk about the progress of the Negro—I’ll
tell you, mister, it’s just because the Negro has been
in America while America has gone forward that the Negro
appears to have gone forward.
The Negro is like a man on
a luxury commuter train doing ninety miles an hour.
He looks out of the window, along with all the white
passengers in their Pullman chairs, and he thinks he’s
doing ninety, too. Then
he gets to the men’s room and looks in the mirror—and he
sees he’s not really getting anywhere at all.
His reflection shows a black man standing there in the
white uniform of a dining-car steward.
He may get on the 5:10, all right, but he sure won’t be
getting off at Westport.
Is there anything then, in your opinion, that could be done—by
either whites or blacks—to expedite the social and economic
progress of the Negro in America?
x: . . . The white man must realize that the sins of
the fathers are about to be visited upon the heads of the
children who have continued those sins only in more
sophisticated ways. …
But there is
something the white man can do to avert this fate.
He must atone—and this can only be done by allowing
black men, those who choose, to leave this land of bondage and
go to a land of our own. But
if he doesn’t want a mass movement of our people away from
this house of bondage, then he should separate this country.
He should give us several states here on American soil,
where those of us who wish to can go and set up our own
government, our own economic system, our own civilization.
Since we have given over
three hundred years of our own slave labor to the white man’s
America, helped to build it up for him, it’s only right that
white America should give us everything we need in
finance and materials for the next twenty-five years, until our
own nation is able to stand on its feet.
Then, if the Western Hemisphere is attacked by outside
enemies, we would have both the capability and the motivation to
join in defending the hemisphere, in which we would then have a
sovereign stake. …
Source: Westin, Alan
The Civil-Rights Struggle in America.
New York: Basic Books,
posted 9 May 2005
* * *
Coltrane, "Alabama" /
Kalamu ya Salaam, "Alabama"
A Love Supreme
A Blues for the Birmingham Four
/ Eulogy for the Young Victims
/ Six Dead After Church
My Story, My Song (Featuring blues guitarist Walter Wolfman Washington)
* * *
The Founding Fathers and the Dilemma of Black
By Roger W.
Jefferson's Pillow, Wilkins returns to
America's beginnings and the founding fathers who
preached and fought for freedom, even though they
owned other human beings and legally denied them
their humanity. He asserts that the mythic accounts
of the American Revolution have ignored slavery and
oversimplified history until the heroes, be they the
founders or the slaves in their service, are denied
any human complexity. Wilkins offers a thoughtful
analysis of this fundamental paradox through his
exploration of the lives of George Washington,
George Mason, James Madison, and of course Thomas
Jefferson. He discusses how class, education, and
personality allowed for the institution of slavery,
unravels how we as Americans tell different sides of
that story, and explores the confounding ability of
that narrative to limit who we are and who we can
become. An important intellectual history of
America's founding, Jefferson's Pillow will change
the way we view our nation and ourselves.
* * *
Representing the Race
The Creation of the Civil Rights Lawyer
By Kenneth W. Mack
Representing the Race tells the story of an enduring paradox of American race relations, through the prism of a collective biography of African American lawyers who worked in the era of segregation. . . . Mack reorients what we thought we knew about famous figures such as Thurgood Marshall, who rose to prominence by convincing local blacks and prominent whites that he was—as nearly as possible—one of them. But he also introduces a little-known cast of characters to the American racial narrative. These include Loren Miller, the biracial Los Angeles lawyer who, after learning in college that he was black, became a Marxist critic of his fellow black attorneys and ultimately a leading civil rights advocate; and Pauli Murray, a black woman who seemed neither black nor white, neither man nor woman, who helped invent sex discrimination as a category of law. The stories of these lawyers pose the unsettling question: what, ultimately, does it mean to “represent” a minority group in the give-and-take of American law and politics? /
For Love of Liberty
* * * * *
To the Mountaintop
My Journey Through the Civil Rights Movement
A personal history of the civil
rights movement from activist and acclaimed journalist
Charlayne Hunter-Gault. On January 20, 2009, 1.8
million people crowded the grounds of the Capitol to
witness the inauguration of Barack Obama. Among the
masses was Charlayne Hunter-Gault. She had flown from
South Africa for the occasion, to witness what was for
many the culmination of the long struggle for civil
rights in the United States. In this compelling personal
history, she uses the event to look back on her own
involvement in the civil rights movement, as one of two
black students who forced the University of Georgia to
integrate, and to relate the pivotal events that swept
the South as the movement gathered momentum through the
early 1960s. With poignant black-and-white photos,
original articles from the New York Times, and a unique
personal viewpoint, this is a moving tribute to the men
and women on whose shoulders Obama stood.
* * *
The White Masters of the
The World and Africa, 1965
By W. E. B. Du Bois
W. E. B. Du Bois’
Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization
* * *
Ancient African Nations
* * * * *
If you like this page consider making a donation
* * * * *
Negro Digest /
Browse all issues
* * * * *
The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan
The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll
Only a Pawn in Their Game
Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for
* * *
The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg
Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804
January 1, 1804 -- The Founding of
* * * * *
* * *
(Books, DVDs, Music, and more)
update 15 May 2012