Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention

Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention, by Manning Marable ($16.72)

Amazon:  [A] groundbreaking piece of work. …The result is not just a biography, but also a history of Muslims in America and a sweeping account of one man’s transformation… It will be difficult for anyone to better this book. … a work of art, a feast that combines genres skillfully: biography, true-crime, political commentary. It gives us Malcolm X in full gallop. — Wil Haygood Washington Post [L]ucid, hugely researched and surely definitive…an extraordinary story. Sunday Times [A]n incredibly detailed account of Malcolm’s life (and an investigation of his murder) and it is, of course, completely riveting…it is inevitably much more than a biography of one man… Marable is intensely and intimately sympathetic. — Geoff Dyer New Yorker In the pantheon of black American protest figures only Martin Luther King occupies a more exalted position, but it is Malcolm X whose legend has the greater street credibility and aura of cool…Now, almost a half century [after his assassination], Malcolm has finally received the biography that his unique role in black culture demands…A meticulous, comprehensive, and fair-minded portrait. — Andrew Anthony Observer Professor Manning Marable’s Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention is encyclopaedic in its approach. The endnotes and bibliography indicate the staggering breadth and depth of scholarship underpinning this volume…Undoubtedly it will stand as a last lecture on the subject by one of America’s most distinguished historians. — Wilbert Rideau Financial Times [A] wealth of detail, some of it new, some of it old stories confirmed…At the end of it all, Malcolm X remains Malcolm X, for good or ill, one of the most fascinating historical figures of the 20th Century…a labour of love…a courageous endeavour. — Hugh Muir Guardian Malcolm’s short life (he was slain at 39) makes a fascinating story…Mr Marable has scoured contemporary press clippings in America, Europe and Africa…and benefitted…from the recent release to the public of hundreds of Malcolm’s letters, photographs and texts of speeches. The Economist Marable gives us all the raw material for a harshly critical appraisal… Marable’s is very far from the first biography of Malcolm, but it is undoubtedly the most penetrating and thoroughly researched. It clearly surpasses the best previous effort, Bruce Perry’s 1991 study — Stephen Howe The Independent By the end of the 1960s, Malcolm’s disciples had elevated him to what Manning Marable, in this weighty biography, calls ‘secular sainthood’; in death, his image was quickly refashioned to ’embody the very ideal of blackness for an entire generation’… But Marable… resists the temptation of hagiography and fills in the gaps left by previous books. Where the autobiography, carefully organised by the NOI-sceptic Haley, presents an idealised vision of a man’s growth as a thinker, Marable gives us Malcolm in all his self-contradiction and self-doubt… By refusing to pin him down, he offers glimpses of the human being behind the legend. — Yo Zushi New Statesman –This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

Product Description

Years in the making–the definitive biography of the legendary black activist.

Of the great figure in twentieth-century American history perhaps none is more complex and controversial than Malcolm X. Constantly rewriting his own story, he became a criminal, a minister, a leader, and an icon, all before being felled by assassins’ bullets at age thirty-nine. Through his tireless work and countless speeches he empowered hundreds of thousands of black Americans to create better lives and stronger communities while establishing the template for the self-actualized, independent African American man. In death he became a broad symbol of both resistance and reconciliation for millions around the world.

Manning Marable’s new biography of Malcolm is a stunning achievement. Filled with new information and shocking revelations that go beyond the Autobiography, Malcolm X unfolds a sweeping story of race and class in America, from the rise of Marcus Garvey and the Ku Klux Klan to the struggles of the civil rights movement in the fifties and sixties. Reaching into Malcolm’s troubled youth, it traces a path from his parents’ activism through his own engagement with the Nation of Islam, charting his astronomical rise in the world of Black Nationalism and culminating in the never-before-told true story of his assassination. Malcolm Xwill stand as the definitive work on one of the most singular forces for social change, capturing with revelatory clarity a man who constantly strove, in the great American tradition, to remake himself anew.

About the Author

Manning Marable is M. Moran Weston and Black Alumni Council Professor of African American Studies and professor of history and public affairs at Columbia University. He was founding director of African American Studies at Columbia from 1993 to 2003. Since 2002, he has directed Columbia’s Center for Contemporary Black History. The author of fifteen books, Marable is also the editor of the quarterly journal Souls.

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