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Malcolm X and Black Rage by Cornel West

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Malcolm X and the anger he had for the states because of their unfair treatment to African Americans. Malcolm wanted to create a psychic conversion which is making a black person truly believe in the capacity his or herself by destroying white racist oppression. He also wanted black people to stop the portrayal society had of them. Not only did he want white people to see them differently, but he wanted black people to see themselves differently as well.

Cornel West calls Malcolm a prophet in American history.

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Cornel West says “Malcolm X was the prophet of black rage primarily because of his great love for black people” (peg. 451). The reason Cornel West calls Malcolm a prophet is because the way he expressed his black rage which he had done like no other person had ever done in American history. Malcolm knew the risk he was taking when he spoke publicly on the relentless attacks on African Americans that they have experienced on their intelligence, looks, and potential from a society that values whiteness.

Doing that could’ve resulted in things like early death or prison but he did it anyway because he had so much love for black people. The constant attacks affected how blacks looked at themselves. Malcolm believed that if black people felt the love that motivated that rage the love would produce a psychic conversion. A “psychic conversion” which insists that black people must no longer measure themselves by any standards that devalue them in favor of whiteness.

West use Michael Jackson as a great example when he said “Michael Jackson may rightly wish o be viewed as a person, not a color (neither white nor black), but his facial revisions reveal a self-management based on a yardstick… ” (peg. 451). Even though he was one of the greatest entertainers ever to live he still partially viewed himself through white people eyes. The black middle class was at risk if a psychic conversion was to happen because they achieved success by striving to measure up to the white yardstick. Malcolm notion of psychic conversion was a critic and response to W.

E. B Du Bois of “Double Consciousness”. Double Consciousness is the black people who live between the black and white worlds. Blacks had to be conscious of how they appeared in both black and white worlds to gain acceptance and approval in both. Du Bois was the first to observe that black people in a white supremacist society had to see themselves through a double lens and that they are not able to be free of who they are. Malcolm X believed that through separation from the whites Judgmental views they could overcome racism.

Instead of associating with whites and white culture, they would focus on loving homeless, and through that love overcome discrimination. Malcolm X has no interest in black religion or music. Malcolm X believes that a ‘black’ religion or specific genre of music would serve only to confuse the objective, which was black equality. Malcolm didn’t want white or black supremacy. Elijah Muhammad concluded that black rage was destructive and self-destructive without a broad moral vision and political organization. Muhammad imitated the supremacy game and imitated it with his black supremacy doctrine.

Malcolm X rejects black vapidity to white supremacy ideology and practice. Malcolm had a fear of cultural hybrid. Cultural hybrid downplayed the vicious character of white supremacy. In a white culture, whites would always dominate and that a democratic society could not help them alone. Cultural hybrid linked the destinies of black and white people such that the possibility of black freedom was farfetched. Malcolm fear of cultural hybrid was linked to his own personal hybrid. Malcolm X was the grandson of a white grandfather, and likely developed his fear of a mixed culture from it.

His fear as based on the fact that if blacks integrated into white culture, they would never truly be able to rise above racism, for fear of going against the culture. The young black generation is up against a lot. West says “The young black generations are up against the forces of death, destruction and disease” (peg. 458). A reason why west thinks this is because the drugs and guns that is easy to get your hands on now and days. In conclusion Malcolm X wanted black people to stop the portrayal society had on them.

Cornel West believes that “Malcolm X was the first real black spokesperson ho looked ferocious white racism in the eye, didn’t blink, and lives long enough to tell America the truth about this glaring hypocrisy in a bold and defiant manner. “(peg. 459) Malcolm X was the only person that actually viewed the black unfairness in American society. Instead of accepting and ignoring he took control of true love for black people and wanted to make a difference. The change not only starts with changing white supremacy ideas, but for blacks to start changing the views of uncap abilities that blacks draw upon themselves.

Cite this Malcolm X and Black Rage by Cornel West

Malcolm X and Black Rage by Cornel West. (2017, Jul 20). Retrieved from https://graduateway.com/malcolm-x-and-black-rage-by-cornel-west-5143/

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