Black Classic Press Releases Searing Collection Criticizing Pulitzer Prize-Winning Book on Malcolm X
Baltimore, MD (October 15, 2012) -- Black Classic Press (BCP) announced today the release of A Lie of Reinvention: Correcting Manning Marable's Malcolm X. The new collection of essays is a critical response to Manning Marable's biography, Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention, which was controversially acclaimed as the late scholar's "magnum opus" and awarded a Pulitzer Prize this past spring.
Though lauded by many, Marable's book was also debated and denounced by others as a flawed biography full of conjecture and errors and lacking in new factual content. In BCP's A Lie of Reinvention, editors Jared A. Ball and Todd Steven Burroughs lead a group of established and emerging Black scholars and activists who have taken a clear stance that A Life of Reinvention is a political reshaping - a contradiction and a distortion of the life and times of Malcolm X.
Included among the essays assembled in this book are the works of many who have benefited from Malcolm X's example and legacy. Among these is A. Peter Bailey, a veteran journalist who worked with Malcolm's Organization of Afro-American Unity, and who takes issue with multiple aspects of Marable's book, including how he himself is characterized within it. Bill Strickland, who also knew Malcolm, provides what he calls a "personal critique" of the biography. From behind prison walls, Mumia Abu-Jamal offers a revision to his earlier public praise of Marable's book and a far more critical reflection on it. Rising scholars Kali Akuno, Kamau Franklin, Sundiata Keita Cha-Jua, Christopher M. Tinson, Eugene Puryear, and Greg Thomas join the sage, activist voices of Rosemari Mealy, Patricia Reid-Merritt, Raymond Winbush, Amiri Baraka, Karl Evanzz, William Sales, and Zak Kondo in pointing out numerous historical problems with and ideological misinterpretations in Marable's work.
As Burroughs writes in the work's Coda: "[Marable] does not need our tribute; others will take care of that. History is more important than any biographer or biographical subject's legacy, including El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz (Malcolm X). The issue for us is the need to preserve accurate historical memory, and to do so in concrete words and strong deeds."
About Black Classic Press
Black Classic Press was founded in 1978 by W. Paul Coates and specializes in publishing vintage and contemporary popular and academic works by and about people of African descent. The press currently has more than 100 titles in print. Among the press's notable authors are Walter Mosley, Amiri Baraka, Walter Rodney, and E. Ethelbert Miller as well as Dorothy Porter, John Henrik Clarke, George L. Jackson, and Bobby Seale. BCP titles are distributed to the trade by Publishers Group West and are available from leading bookstores and directly from the press. Visit www.blackclassicbooks.com for more information.
W. Paul Coates
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