Malcolm that he was able to make

March 29, 2019 Teaching

Malcolm X came from a background of astounding adversity. From racists burning down his childhood home, to a sick mother, to his adolescent years being full of crime, it is surprising that he was able to make such amazing changes in not only his community, but all over the country. Malcolm X started his transformation when he went to prison and became a member of the nation of Islam. Frederick Douglass, on the other hand, was also a man that had to overcome certain barriers to reach the level of articulacy that they had mastered. Douglass was born a slave, in a time where blacks could be beaten, or worse, for trying to have an education. Both of these men used the problems that they were facing as a means of motivation to make a change in a less than favorable world.
One major difference between the to of their beliefs was mainly the fact that Douglass believed in the abolition of slavery while X believed in the eradication of racism all together. Regardless of that simple fact, they both fought for injustice for blacks in America.
Douglass didn’t want to be a slave. He wished to be something more than the property of the white man, who’s only point of significance was to do painstaking labor and to be degraded for the rest of his life. Douglass’s approach to learning to read and write was actually quite clever. In fact, he had a few different strategies to reach his goal. One specifically mentioned in the text, was how he traded bread for knowledge. He would meet with some of the poor white kids to learn new words from them and as payment they would get bread from him. (The irony that a slave has more food than white kids, am I right but anyways). He would even go to the lumber yard and copy the letters that the carpenter would write on the timber of the name of the place that it was intended to go. Then later on, he would challenge the boys that he could write better than they could. This bit of friendly competition resulted in teaching Douglass valuable lessons. Whether he won or lost the competition, he still was reaching his goal. Regardless of the outcome, he would always be the winner. The knowledge that he obtained put him at an advantage and made him a smarter and wiser man than the slave that he was forced to be. This knowledge led to him being able to write his own freedom pass and to escape from his slave master.
With the knowledge that Malcolm X obtained, he was able to understand the conditions that the black race was going through. With his knowledge he became a speaker as well. He, at the time, was the most visible delegate for black muslims and fought for religious freedom from the destructive and hateful constraints of Christianity, racism, and violence against african americans.
This comparison of these two very powerful texts gives insight to prime examples of how powerful and education can be in one’s life. The education of one person can be a slippery slope of good outcomes. The education of one person can bring forth motivation for others to gain education. The education of one person is the first step to changing the world. The education of one person can invoke change in various aspects of day to day life. Basically, knowledge is the key to all things, to unlock any unanswered questions and to make new questions blossom. The more we knowledge we gain through reading and writing, the more it is possible to understand things in separate and distinct ways.


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