Malcolm X

Thesis Statement: What long range effects did the death of Reverend Little, Malcolm’s father, have on Malcolm?

In the paper the effects of racial discrimination are delineated in a more professional way. The data is gathered from the autobiography of Malcolm and from the film Malcolm X by Lee. The man has changed his religion and got familiarity in the whole word just by advocating the plight of blacks. So the paper is focusing the effects of racial discrimination.

When we have to compare and contrast the movie and the book about the atuobiography of Malcolm X then it would be very difficult to find out any clash between the two about the events of Malcolm’s life. There is only one factor which is quite notable that the book is providing more clear and elaborated understanding about the events of Malcolm’s life. Here in the article the major area of research is to find out the long range effects, of the death of Reverend Little, on Malcolm’s life. Spike Lee is the true representative of the autobiography of Malcolm’s life. As a filmmaker he has induced originality and in film he has shown the race conflicts in a more natural way. On the other hand Alex Haley has depicted Malcolm’s life in a more elaborated way showin all real time interactions of Malcolm with white community.

Most of the activities and motivation in Malcolm’s life are the result of long oppression of the family and ultimately the major loss of the life of his father when white racists killed his father in order to suppress the blacks. From here Malcolm’s life started in a new direction. The things are shown in a same way in both movie and the book but the book is providing clearer and well defined scenarios. After the death of his father he was expelled from the school at the age of fifteen only. After leaving the education Malcolm joined different gangs of the rascals and started crimes in his very teen age. About robbery and theft Malcolm says to writer "I pulled out my gun, shook out all five bullets, and then let them see me put back only one bullet. I twirled the cylinder, and put the muzzle to my head. ...I told them Never cross a man not afraid to die (Malcolm X, 146)."At the age of twenty he was sent to jail when he was found in a burglary. His life in jail changed his attitude altogether and there once again he started his education. During this period he also came to know about the Nation of Isalm and he studied the preachings of Elijah Muhammad with full zest and ambition.

After release from jail Malcolm was too much inspired by Elijah Muhammad so he joined the Nation of Isalm and there he got the basic information about self-respect. In the book we have to see the interaction of Malcolm either in a negative or in a positive way but in movie the interactions are very limited. After joining Nation of Isalm Malcolm became an international figure. His interviews were conducted and lectures were delivered by him at different occasions and institutes. Most of the sayings or wordings of Malcolm were revolving around the injustices of whites with blacks in United States of America. Many years of his life he preached that the white are Satans or devils while Elijah Muhammad is the messenger of God. So this shows a second major change in the Malcolm’s life that after rleasing from jail he was so much tortured that in search of self respect he changed his religion also and later he went to Mecca for pilgrimage also.

There are many differences between the book and movie which one can easily observe after reading the book and after viewing the film. In film the introduction of the character of Banes is not really in the book rather it is a dummy character in the movie that plays an important role in introducing Nation of Islam to Malcolm. But in real life of Malcolm this effect was not depicted in this way in the book rather in the jail he studied the preachings of Elijah Muhammad with keen interest. In the book there is no character that inspires Malcolm about studies of preachings of Elijah Muhammad. The character of Bimbi in the book is also replaced with Banes and serves as the advisor to Malcolm and he adivse him that to continue studies in the jail. The very introduction of Malcolm with Elijah Muhammad’s preaching was done by his own brothers and sisters. And they told him in the jail that white men are the devils while the black men are quite brain washed and humanitarian but in film the very change was induced by Banes in the personality of Malcolm.

In the book Malcolm told to the writer that in jail "I had to force myself to bend my knees. ...Again, again, I would force myself back down into the praying-to-Allah posture. When finally I was able to make myself stay down--I didn't know how to pray. (Malcolm X, 173)" But in film Lee also allocated this responsibility to Banes that the man is shown as a spiritual teacher of Malcolm also. So Lee is trying to change the very character of Malcolm because each and every change in Malcolm’s life is the result of the death of his father and self respect. Malcolm’s sister Ella played a vital role in changing the personality of the man after the death of their father but Lee has excluded the character of Ella from the whole plot of the film. About Ella Malcolm told to the witer that "Ella ...was the first really proud black woman I had ever seen in my life (Malcolm X, 34)."  But in the film Lee has given more importance to his wife Betty and Betty shows her carring attitude by saying "You are with us even when you are away". In the book Malcolm says my quarrrel with my wife was based on money but its not so in case of film where Lee has shown a quarrel which is negating the very effect of Ella and Betty on Malcolm. In the film Betty says "Have we ever had a fight, an argument? We're gonna have one. ...the talk's everywhere. It's not just talk anymore. ...paternity suits from two secretaries ...Are you so committed that you're blinded to the truth? ...Do you know what Banes is doing? ...Open your eyes." The filmmaker Lee is deliberately changing the effects on the life of man and is not truly depicting the autobiography rather he is sabotaging the real sense or strength of the autobiography. Because in the very dialogue of Betty she is going to force the man that Nation of Islam is not a good movement rather these people (Elijah Muhammad) are going to spoil you but in the book the case is altogether different.  She is saying indirectly to him that the preachings of Banes and Elijah Muhammad are harmful to you.  In the film Lee has shown immense devotion of the man with Betty but it is not so in the real life of Malcolm because in the book the writer has shown his immense devotion with Elijah Muhammad and with the preachings of Elijah Muhammad.So the film is going to damage the very essence of my topic which I have chosen.

The very significance of my topic is hidden or is lingering around one event which is described as racial discrimination. In racial discrimination the people are not treated at par rather a sort of barrier is created between two of different races on the basis of color, religion, culture and social behaviour or attitude. When this factor is being advocated in a society then in those societie the birth of Malcolms is not a strange event. The death of a human or an innocent man is not a humanly act rather a sin in each and every religion and society. When a child sees the death of his father or his lovers in a very small age then it would not be possible for any one to mitigate the effects of those scenes, which are based on cruelties, from the heart and mind of a man. On the sad demise of his father the man get involved in robberies or burglaries and the only reason to do that is to harm the society which is not showing justice with them so it creates a sort of anarchy in the region which ultimately lead to bloodshed. Even the people are going to hate their religion in which they are not getting self respect and safety even in a society which is preaching the norms of the very religion of which they are the followers. In most of the educated societies still the war of black and white is going on but they are not seeing the after effects of these activities. It is evident from the history that nations have to face severe losses and penalties when they have to adopt such unethical activities like racial disrcrimination and many others.

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