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Martin, Malcolm, Mandela, and Biko: Resistance to Modern Day Slavery and Philosophies for Black Libe


Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Stephen Biko, and Nelson Mandela were four of ... Martin Luther King Jr. successfully mobilized the oppressed masses to resist ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Martin, Malcolm, Mandela, and Biko: Resistance to Modern Day Slavery and Philosophies for Black Libe

Martin, Malcolm, Mandela, and Biko Resistance to
Modern Day Slavery and Philosophies for Black
Disclaimer The Following Presentation Is By No
Means A Comprehensive Review Of Martin Luther
King Jr., Malcolm X, Nelson Mandela, Or Stephen
Rather, This Presentation Is A Thematic Analysis
Of The Four Leaders Comparing The Selected
Subjects of Justice and Liberation.
Furthermore, The Revolution Will Not Be
Televised. Nor Will It Be Fully Condensed Into
This PowerPoint Presentation.
These Leaders Will Be Discussed Primarily in the
Time Frame of 1960 - 1975
INTRODUCTION Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X,
Stephen Biko, and Nelson Mandela were four of the
most prominent freedom fighters of the 20th
THESIS King, Malcolm, Biko, and Mandela shared
the common drive to free their people from modern
day slavery by comparable and complimentary means
of direct resistance and self-empowerment
philosophies for Black liberation.
(No Transcript)
King, Malcolm, Biko, and Mandela Challenged the
Social Conscience of the United States, South
Africa, and the Rest of the Attentive World to
Recognize and Address the Immorality of
Subjugating Human Beings for the Color of Their
In the U.S., Malcolm X sparked the dormant anger
in his brothers and sisters to stand up and
command immediate justice on equal terms while
King sparked the loving compassion of his
audience to stand up for the morality of equal
Martin Luther King Jr. successfully mobilized the
oppressed masses to resist discrimination
non-violently through the will power of love and
compassion for all humanity, which he stressed in
many of his speeches
King We must not use violence. Oh, sometimes as
we struggle it will be necessary to boycott. But
let us remember as we boycott that a boycott is
never an end. A boycott is merely means to awaken
within the oppressor the sense of shame and to
let him know that we don't like how we are being
treated but the end my friends is
reconciliation, the end is redemption. (Yeah)
And our aim must never be to defeat the white man
or to humiliate him. Our aim must be to win his
friendship and his understanding … We must get a
hold of this simple principle of love and let it
be our guiding principle throughout our
struggle, (Address at Freedom Rally,
King truly believed that the root of every human
being was of good and not evil.
Teaching the moral force of love that was taught
to him by his Christian faith, King put the
practitioners of racial bigotry to shame in the
public spotlight of the U.S. and the world by
responding to violent acts with massive
non-violent demonstrations instead of retaliation.
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Malcolm disagreed with Kings non-violent
activism and instead called for immediate
self-defense for Black people to protect
themselves from brutality
Malcolm We feel weve waited long enough. And
we feel that all this crawling and sitting-in and
crying-in and praying-in and begging-in hasnt
gotten any meaningful results …
We should be peaceful, law-abiding but the
time has come for the American Negro to fight
back in self-defense whenever and wherever he is
being unjustly and unlawfully attacked. If the
government thinks I am wrong for saying this then
let the government start doing its job,
(Breitman, Malcolm X Speaks 70, 22).
Malcolm made himself clear that he was not trying
to win the friendship of his oppressors.
Malcolm did not believe in hurting innocent
people but, unlike King, he did believe in
self-defense because he valued the lives of Black
people. While white racism had society
convinced that the Black life was worth nothing,
Malcolm told his people to take pride in their
Black identity and love themselves.
(No Transcript)
Similarly in South Africa, Biko and Mandela
complimented each other by their different
methods of helping their people.
Much like Malcolms strategy, Biko infused the
notion of self-help for Black people to uplift
and provide for themselves psychologically,
socially, and economically.
Biko … as long as blacks are suffering from
inferiority complex a result of 300 years of
deliberate oppression, denigration and derision
they will be useless as co-architects of a normal
society where man is nothing else but man for
his own sake.
Hence what is necessary as a prelude to anything
else that may come is a very strong grass-roots
build-up of black consciousness such that blacks
can learn to assert themselves and stake their
rightful claim …
Black Consciousness therefore, takes cognizance
of the deliberateness of Gods plan in creating
black people black. It seeks to infuse the black
community with a new-found pride in themselves,
their efforts, their value systems, their culture
their religion and their outlook in to life,
(Biko, I Write What I Like 21, 49).
Like Malcolm X, Biko advocated Black pride and
self-awareness to encourage greater vitality to
the Black community by uniting them with pride
for their humanity in order to counteract white
societys teachings of Black inferiority.
Mandela, on the other hand, forced more external
change by rallying political resistance activism,
conducting diplomatic negotiations, and
consolidating support in international relations.
As the leader of the African National Congress
Youth League, Mandela fought for justice by
resisting the laws of the colonial Nationalist
government, and calling for a true democracy,
which would represent the people as a whole in
South Africa.
During his treason trial against the Apartheid
government, Mandela shared Malcolms sentiments
of disillusionment with a so-called democracy
that produces second-class citizens
Mandela How can I be expected to believe that
this same racial discrimination which has been
the cause of so much injustice and suffering
right through the years, should now operate here
to give me a fair and open trial?
…I consider myself neither morally nor legally
obliged to obey laws made by a Parliament in
which I am not represented, (
Mandela, like Malcolm, was fully aware of the
hypocrisy of his nations government and both
leaders were ready to lead their peoples to
revolution to gain true representation.
In the U.S., King was also prepared to fight for
equal representation but instead of turning
towards revolution, King believed equality could
be achieved within the existing democracy of the
nation and he was prepared to die for it
King And even if he tries to kill you, (He
cant kill you) youll develop the inner
conviction that there are some things so dear,
some things so precious, some things so eternally
true, that they are worth dying for (Yes)
Applause …
I hope you will allow me to say to you this
afternoon that God is not interested merely in
the freedom of black men and brown men and yellow
men. God is interested in the freedom of the
whole human race. Applause (Speech at the
Great March on Detroit,
While King inspired people of all colors to unite
in a moral battle against racism, Malcolm focused
his attention on helping the Black community
empower itself.
Malcolm called for Black people to help
themselves by consolidating their resources
within their own communities.
This philosophy of Black Nationalism, much
like Bikos Black Consciousness later in South
Africa, was meant to empower Black people to
uplift themselves from oppression by freeing
themselves from outside dependencies on white
In his speech, The Ballot or the Bullet,
Malcolm advises Black people to unite and uplift
themselves by consolidating their political and
economic power
Malcolm We should control the economy of our
community … The philosophy of black nationalism
involves a re-education program in the black
community in regards to economics …
If we own the stores, if we operate the
businesses, if we try and establish some industry
in our own community, then were developing to
the position where we are creating employment for
our own kind …
Once you gain control of the economy of your own
community, then you dont have to picket and
boycott and beg some cracker downtown for a job
in his business …
The political philosophy of black nationalism
means we must control the politics and the
politicians of our community. They must no
longer take orders from outside forces. We will
organize, and sweep out of office all Negro
politicians who are puppets for the outside
forces, (Breitman, Malcolm X Speaks 39, 21).
Malcolms ideal for Black Nationalism was to
develop completely self-sustainable Black
communities that supported Black growth
economically, politically and socially, with no
dependence on the resources of White America.
Although he did not live long enough to make his
vision a reality, Malcolm never the less inspired
many Black people with a sense of pride in their
Black identity, which became a unifying force
against racism.
In South Africa, Biko also greatly inspired Black
pride in his people as he echoed Malcolms call
for self-empowerment in order to achieve social
Biko If by integration you understand a
breakthrough into white society by black, an
assimilation and acceptance of blacks into an
already established set of norms and code of
behavior set up by and maintained by whites, then
YES I am against it …
If on the other hand by integration you mean
there shall be free participation by all members
of a society, catering for the full expression of
the self in a freely changing society as
determined by the will of the people, then I am
with you, (Biko, I Write What I Like 24).
Like Malcolm and unlike King, Biko had no
interest in jumping into white society to make
their society habitable and equal for Black
people to live in.
Rather, Biko believed that Black South Africans
must learn to help themselves first and not rely
on the leadership or financial support of whites
because that was the very chain of mental slavery
that needed to be broken- white dependence.
While Biko focused on education for Black
independence from within, Mandela led more direct
resistance by organizing the people in civil
disobedience against Apartheid.
Like Biko, Mandela envisioned freedom not just
for Black South Africans but freedom for all
people in South Africa
Mandela During my lifetime I have dedicated
myself to this struggle of the African people. I
have fought against white domination, and I have
fought against black domination.
I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and
free society in which all persons live together
in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is
an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve.
But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am
prepared to die, (Mandela, Long Walk to
Freedom 368).
Mandela, Biko, Martin, and Malcolm were all
prepared to die for their common ideal of
equality for their people.
Conclusion The resistance philosophies of
Martin, Malcolm, Mandela, and Biko commonly share
the call for self-determination and direct
resistance by the people in order to achieve
liberation from oppression.
Martin and Mandela offered greater attention to
political negotiation and interracial
collaboration while Malcolm and Biko offered
greater emphasis on self-empowerment through
Black pride and independence.
The contrasting methods between Martin and
Malcolm and Mandela and Biko, respectively,
created two parallel and complimentary dynamics
to the freedom movements in the U.S. and in South
Africa that proved to be vital to their common
struggles for liberation.