Book Review: Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention

Jarrod Horton

Staff Writer   

 Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention is author Manning Marable attempt to paint a more accurate picture of the life and legacy of Malcolm X.  He said after reading The Autobiography of Malcolm X, he noticed “numerous inconsistencies, errors, and fictive characters at odds with Malcolm’s actual life history” He presented a more factual account of Malcolm’s story based on thousands of documents the FBI had on Malcolm from wiretaps, and interviews with Malcolm’s colleagues and friends. Marable spent over 20 years researching, organizing, and preparing this information for his book. Oddly there were no interviews or information given in the book from Betty Shabazz, Malcolm’s wife who died in 1997.Instead he mainly relied on stories from Malcolm’s associates, and the people who work with him on a daily basis In spite of the sensationalism that surrounded Marable homosexual accusations and Malcolm’s extramarital affairs, over half of the book focus on Malcolm X’s shifting political and social ideologies. It gives great details about the events surrounding Malcolm’s break from the Nation of Islam, also his two organizations, (Muslim Mosque Incorporated and the Organization of Afro America Unity) in addition to the notes Malcolm wrote while taking his trips to Africa and the Middle East.

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