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By Jack Rummel
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Extra info for Malcolm X: Militant Black Leader (Black Americans of Achievement)
The Nation of Islam, with its message of racial pride and devotion to Allah, hoped to persuade blacks to build a separate society free from the control of whites. The Nation of Islam’s initial period of growth was checked in 1934, when Fard disappeared without a trace. In the aftermath of this mysterious occurrence, Elijah Muhammad became engaged in a battle with other ministers for control of the Nation of Islam. Jailed for three years after being convicted of draft evasion, he eventually gained leadership of the Nation of Islam.
44 Fishing for Souls After converting to Islam, Malcolm X made a commitment to improving his mind by reading voraciously and practicing his writing. He evolved from a violent, rebellious person into someone introspective and charismatic. Prison authorities noticed this change and granted him parole in 1952 after he had served six years. Determined to correct this weakness, he sat down at the desk in his room and began laboriously copying the first page of a dictionary. It took him all day to finish the task.
After the aborted robbery, the security guards’ description of Malcolm was posted on “Wanted” notices around Harlem. He decided to give up robbery and find a new occupation, but the only activities on which he seemed to be able to focus his attention were dreaming up new hustles, gambling, and taking narcotics. CURRENT OF DISCONTENT As Malcolm was facing an increasingly bleak future, racial tensions in Harlem were growing. Harlemites, like other black Americans, were incensed that blacks who enlisted in the army were forced to serve in segregated units and were given almost no opportunity to become officers.