Journal Note-Taking Sample

Source: Autobiography Malcolm X                                          Chapter: 1

Major Theme:  Malcolm Little had to cope with realities of being black in America.

Salient Points:

  • White supremacists influenced Earl Little.
    • They (white supremacists) supported the “back to Africa movement”
    • Why? Because they wanted all black to leave this country.
    • Malcolm X believed his father to be a victim of brainwashing by white people, who infected blacks with self-hatred—therefore he would pass down onto his family his own form of the abuse he received as a black man.
    • Malcolm Little had escaped this abuse because he was light skinned, however, his father was hard on the rest of the family.
    • Man ran the house (patriarchal) back then.


  • Patriarchal– the male head of a family, tribe, community, church, order, etc.
  • Pan-Africanism-?

Influential People if any: 

  1. Marcus Garvey– his organization, the Universal Negro Improvement Association (UNIA), represented the largest mass movement in African-American history. Proclaiming a black nationalist “Back to Africa” message.

How I could relate to this chapter:

  1. Being a light skinned black myself I have noticed over my lifetime that many whites would say to me you’re not like the rest of them.
  2. My own people would express a form of jealousy because of my skin tone is light by saying things like “it’s obvious that your relatives were brought up in the house and not the barn. Or “somebody in your family crossed over to the white side”.