92 pages 3 hours read

Malcolm X, Alex Haley

The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Nonfiction | Autobiography / Memoir | Adult | Published in 1965

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Chapters 13-15

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Chapter 13 Summary: “Minister Malcolm X”

By 1954, Malcolm has quit his day job to work fulltime for the Nation of Islam. He travels to Boston to help establish Temple Eleven. He tries to convince Ella to join, but she stubbornly refuses. He also reconnects with some of his old associates, including Shorty. Though reluctant to embrace the Nation of Islam’s teachings, Shorty is thrilled to see Malcolm, and they laugh about old times.

On that same trip, Malcolm establishes Temple Twelve in Philadelphia. In light of these successes, Mr. Muhammad appoints Malcolm to be the minister of Temple Seven in New York City. One of the first things Malcolm does in New York is track down West Indian Archie, who is dying of a terminal illness in a Bronx apartment. The two embrace and put the past behind them.

There are over one million Black people in New York, which presents an opportunity and a challenge for Malcolm. To lure this potential audience for the Nation of Islam, Malcolm must compete with other Black organizations, including countless Black Nationalist groups and “Buy Black” associations. The most fertile grounds for recruitment are Black Christian churches, since churchgoers, most of whom grew up in the South, will go wherever there is “good preaching” (252).