Malcolm X 's father died—killed by white supremacists, it was rumored—when he was young, and at least one of his uncles was lynched. After his mother was placed in a mental hospital when he was 13, he lived in a series of foster homes. In 1946, at age 20, he went to prison for breaking and entering.
While in prison Malcolm X became a member of the Nation of Islam, and after his parole in 1952 quickly rose to become one of its leaders. For a dozen years he was the public face of the controversial group; in keeping with the Nation 's teachings he espoused black supremacy, advocated the separation of black and white Americans and scoffed at the civil rights movement 's emphasis on integration.
By March 1964 Malcolm X had grown disillusioned with the Nation of Islam and its head Elijah Muhammad, and ultimately repudiated the Nation and its teachings. He embraced Sunni Islam and, after a period of travel in Africa and the Middle East, returned to the United States to found Muslim Mosque, Inc. and the Organization of Afro-American Unity. Though continuing to emphasize Pan-Africanism, black self-determination, and black self-defense, he disavowed racism, saying, "I did many things as a Muslim that I 'm sorry for now. I was a zombie then... pointed in a certain direction and told to march".
Malcolm X later said that violence by whites killed three of his father 's brothers, including one who was lynched.
Because of Ku Klux Klan threats—Earl Little 's UNIA activities were "spreading trouble"—the family relocated in 1926
References: Footnotes Works cited Further reading External links Bibliography: Wikipedia @baygross