The Autobiography of Malcolm X Chapter 3: “Homeboy”

Malcolm X, Alex Haley

Chapter 3: “Homeboy”

Study Questions
1. What does Ella want Malcolm to do when he arrives in Boston?

2. Who was Crispus Attucks?

3. What instrument does Shorty play?

4. What is a “slave”?

5. What was Malcolm’s first job in Boston?

6. Name four famous black jazz musicians who performed at Roseland.

7. What type of car does Freddie drive?

8. What is the first item that Malcolm buys on credit?

9. What is a “conk”?

10. What ingredients are necessary in order to conk one’s hair?

Answers
1. Ella wants Malcolm to get to know the city by walking around and traveling through it.

2. Crispus Attucks was a Negro and the first American patriot to be killed by the British in the Boston Massacre.

3. Shorty plays the saxophone.

4. A “slave” is a slang word for a job.

5. Malcolm’s first job in Boston was shining shoes at the Roseland State Ballroom.

6. The famous black jazz musicians who perform at Roseland include Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Lionel Hampton, Cootie Williams, Jimmie Lunceford, Johnny Hodges, Sonny Greer, Jimmie Rushing, Lester Young, Harry Edison, Buddy Tate, Don Byas, Dickie Wells, and Buck Clayton.

7. Freddie drives a pearl gray Cadillac.

8. The first item Malcolm buys on credit is a zoot suit.

9. A “conk” is a slang term for a hairstyle created when African Americans straighten their hair with lye.

10. The ingredients necessary to conk one’s hair are a can of Red Devil lye, two eggs, and two potatoes.