El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz, the man widely known as African-American civil rights leader Malcolm X before his death, would be 90 years old today. Born Malcolm Little in Omaha, Nebraska, on May 19, 1925, a younger Shabazz emerged from prison poised to become one of the most influential voices in the black nationalist and liberation movements. He held a more militant and alternative viewpoint than other black leaders in the civil rights movement of the late 1950s and 1960s. Before his assassination on Feb. 21, 1965, the renowned speaker and former leader to thousands of followers in the predominantly black Muslim organization Nation of Islam had renounced his more militant views and preached racial reconciliation.

Below are 10 quotations from Shabazz's renowned autobiography that reflect the evolution of Shabazz's views on life, his purpose and his mortality, via Sorry Television:

1. “They asked if I knew what ‘conscientious objector’ meant. I told them that when the white man asked me to go off somewhere and fight and maybe die to preserve the way the white man treated the black man in America, then my conscience made me object.” 

2. “I believe it’s a crime for anyone who is being brutalized to continue to accept that brutality without doing something to defend himself.”

3. “Any person who claims to have deep feeling for other human beings should think a long, long time before he votes to have other men kept behind bars -- caged. I am not saying there shouldn’t be prisons, but there shouldn’t be bars. Behind bars, a man never reforms. He will never forget. He never will get completely over the memory of the bars.” 

4. “I have always felt … that the black ‘leader’ whom white men consider to be ‘responsible’ is invariably the black ‘leader’ who never gets any results.”

5. “It has always been my belief that I, too, will die by violence. I have done all that I can to be prepared.” 

6. “Any number of my former brothers felt they would make heroes of themselves in the Nation of Islam if they killed me. … I knew that no one would kill you quicker than a Muslim if he felt that’s what Allah wanted him to do.” 

7. “And in the racial climate of this country today, it is anybody’s guess which of the ‘extremes’ in approach to the black man’s problems might personally meet a fatal catastrophe first – ‘non-violent’ Dr. King, or so-called ‘violent’ me.”

8. “Anything I do today, I regard as urgent.” 

9. “Every morning when I wake up, now, I regard it as having another borrowed day.” 

10. “When I am dead -- I say it that way because from the things I know, I do not expect to live long enough to read this book in its finished from -- I want you to just watch and see if I’m not right when I say: that the white man, in his press, is going to identify me with ‘hate.' ”