For the past 54 years, The Autobiography of Malcolm X has become a staple read in the black community. Mostly along the lines of what is considered to be knowledge of self. History on the classic writing tells that the published product the global masses have all grown to love has a fair amount of missing pieces, most of them are chapters. Most of which the powerful revolutionary’s rhetoric was raw and fiery in relation to the African-American experience here in North America. According to the Associated Press, some of the missing chapters have been found and were auctioned off to a cultural center in the iconic figure’s hometown of Harlem.
On Thursday, Guernsey’s auction house in New York City held an auction featuring the manuscript of the unpublished chapter titled, “The Negro,” where the writing was sold for $7,000. The manuscript was purchased by the Harlem based New York Public Library’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. The center also purchased a 241-page early draft of X’s biography for an undisclosed amount.
“We are like the Western deserts; tumbleweed, rolling and tumbling whichever way the white wind blows,” reads part of the now produced writing. “And the white man is like the cactus, deeply rooted, with spines to keep us off.”
The buzz about missing parts of the classic read started to circulate in 1992 after esteemed attorney Gregory Reed purchased the manuscript from an estate auction after the death of the autobiography’s co-author, Alex Haley. Some pages of the manuscript are on display at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History in Detroit. An unpublished version of the introduction was read aloud at an event in 2010. But overall, a majority of the parts that were cut before the book was published have been locked away from the public.
The director of the Schomburg Center, Kevin Young believes that the value of The Autobiography of Malcolm X has no choice but the skyrocket due to the now disclosed exposure of revisions and comments by Malcolm X and Alex Haley. But, besides from value, thoughts in the Black community are bound to be provoked and revisited concerning the psychology of the great leader now that profound context has surfaced. Most likely, such data will only solidify his expressed truths regarding white America’s criminal behavior against Blacks.