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The Autobiography of Malcolm X

by Malcolm X, Alex Haley

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Chapter 15 Summary: Icarus

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This chapter chronicles Malcolm X's swift ascent within the Nation of Islam, where he gains recognition as a minister and spokesperson. His growing stature within the organization earns him both praise and envy from fellow members.

As Malcolm X becomes increasingly engaged in the civil rights movement, his national prominence rises. With this heightened influence comes a deeper awareness of internal politics and power dynamics within the Nation of Islam. His bond with the group's leader, Elijah Muhammad, begins to fray, and he starts to doubt the ethical integrity of some of its leaders.

Regardless of these misgivings, Malcolm X stays dedicated to the objectives of the Nation of Islam and persistently advocates for its cause. Nevertheless, this chapter foreshadows an imminent rift between Malcolm X and the Nation of Islam, with the title "Icarus" alluding to a forthcoming downfall caused by excessive ambition or arrogance.

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