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Using ideas from To Kill a Mockingbird, explain how Malcolm X changed in his words and...

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ruyu | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 14, 2011 at 3:15 AM via web

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Using ideas from To Kill a Mockingbird, explain how Malcolm X changed in his words and actions after he returned from Mecca?

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 15, 2011 at 8:55 AM (Answer #1)

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I had to pare down the original question to the one featured above.  I think that one of the most intense transformations that Malcolm undergoes as a result of his trip to Mecca is to recognize that color is not the point of differentiation regarding character.  The issue of human character is more complex than reducing it to color, one of the fundamental challenges he had with the Nation of Islam after his trip to Mecca.  In describing the experiences in Mecca, Malcolm understood that "a true brotherhood" was possible even outside the stratification of color.  This is similar to what is gained from Lee's work.  Atticus is an embodiment of this notion of "true brotherhood" as he teaches such lessons to his children.  Atticus embodies Malcolm X's idea of "the graciousness... by people of all colors."  What Malcolm finds in his journey to Mecca is the belief that individuals can be like Atticus in their understanding of how race is not to be used as a weapon of division and a wedge that divides society, but rather a source where people can be brought together.  In this, one sees Atticus representing some of the lessons

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