Michael E. Sawyer

Dec 17, 2020

Black Minded

The Political Philosophy of Malcolm X

Pluto Press 2020

This episode is part of a Special Series on Malcolm X and Black Nationalism.

In this series, we delve into the background of Malcolm X's action and thought in the context of Black Nationalism, correcting the fundamentally mistaken notion that Malcolm X was a civil rights leader. He certainly did not see himself in that way, and explicitly argued otherwise. This helps us place the Afro-American struggle in its dimensions beyond the current American nation-state, including the Black Atlantic, and beyond.

Known as 'the angriest black man in America', Malcolm X was one of the most famous activists to ever live. Going beyond biography, Black Minded: The Political Philosophy of Malcolm X (Pluto Press, 2020) examines Malcolm X's philosophical system, restoring his thinking to the pantheon of Black Radical Thought.

Michael Sawyer argues that the foundational concepts of Malcolm X's political philosophy - economic and social justice, strident opposition to white supremacy and Black internationalism - are often obscured by an emphasis on biography. The text demonstrates the way in which Malcolm X's philosophy lies at the intersection of the thought of W.E.B. Du Bois and Frantz Fanon and is an integral part of the revolutionary politics formed to alleviate the plight of people of African descent globally.

Exploring themes of ontology, the body, geographic space and revolution, Black Minded provides a much-needed appraisal of Malcolm X's political philosophy.

Kirk Meighoo is a TV and podcast host, former university lecturer, author and former Senator in Trinidad and Tobago. He hosts his own podcast, Independent Thought & Freedom, where he interviews some of the most interesting people from around the world who are shaking up politics, economics, society and ideas. You can find it in the iTunes Store or any of your favorite podcast providers. You can also subscribe to his YouTube channel. If you are an academic who wants to get heard nationally, please check out his free training at becomeapublicintellectual.com.

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Kirk Meighoo

Kirk Meighoo is Public Relations Officer for the United National Congress, the Official Opposition in Trinidad and Tobago. His career has spanned media, academia, and politics for three decades.

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