The Diary of Malcolm X

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The Diary of Malcolm X
The Diary of Malcolm X.jpg
EditorsHerb Boyd and Ilyasah Shabazz
AuthorMalcolm X
PublisherThird World Press

The Diary of Malcolm X is a record of Malcolm X's thoughts during 1964, a year that included his pilgrimage to Mecca and two trips to Africa. The diary was scheduled for publication in 2013, but a legal dispute between the publisher and some of Malcolm X's daughters resulted in a delay.


The diary is part of the collection of Malcolm X's papers that his daughters loaned to the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, a division of the New York Public Library, in 2003.[1] It is the private journal kept by the human rights leader during 1964, a year he largely spent traveling in Africa and the Middle East,[2] and scholars consider it "a document of incalculable historical importance".[3]

In 2013, Third World Press launched an Indiegogo campaign to raise money to help publish the diary, which was edited by journalist Herb Boyd and Malcolm X's daughter Ilyasah Shabazz. Publication was expected on November 15, 2013.[2]


Days before the scheduled publication date, Third World Press was sued by X Legacy LLC, a corporation that represents the daughters of Malcolm X. X Legacy won a temporary restraining order, claiming Third World Press did not have the right to publish the book. Third World Press said it had a valid, signed contract. An unnamed source familiar with the suit said the plaintiffs were "probably [Ilyasah’s sisters] Attallah, Quibilah, and Gamela Shabazz", adding that of the remaining sisters, Malaak supported Ilyasah and Malikah was not involved.[3]

At a hearing on November 22, Judge Laura Taylor Swain extended the restraining order until a hearing can be held in January 2014. Lawyers for X Legacy said that there had been reports that Third World Press was selling the diary online despite the restraining order, a claim denied by the publisher's lawyer. The publisher's lawyer argued at the hearing that they had a contract with one of Malcolm X's daughter's to publish the diary; a lawyer for X Legacy said that no contract was valid unless all six daughters agreed.[4]

The legal disputes were resolved and the diary was published in August 2014.[5]


  1. ^ McVeigh, Karen (November 10, 2013). "Family of Malcolm X Sues to Prevent Publication of Diary". The Guardian. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  2. ^ a b Haq, Husna (November 13, 2013). "Malcolm X's Diary: Can It Be Published Without His Family's Permission?". The Christian Science Monitor. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  3. ^ a b Holley Jr., Eugene (November 21, 2013). "'Diary of Malcolm X' Delayed by Court Order". Publishers Weekly. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  4. ^ Neumeister, Larry (November 25, 2013). "Malcolm X Diary Sale Ban Extended Indefinitely". Associated Press, via The Grio. Retrieved December 27, 2013.
  5. ^ "The Diary of Malcolm X: 1964". New York Amsterdam News. October 30, 2014. Retrieved January 11, 2019.

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