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Malcolm X (May 19, 1925 – February 21, 1965), born Malcolm Little and also known as El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz was an African-American Muslim minister, public speaker, and human rights activist. He has been called one of the greatest and most influential African Americans in history, and in 1998, Time named The Autobiography of Malcolm X one of the ten most influential nonfiction books of the 20th century.

The manuscript Blue Lines is the fictional coming of age narrative of a young California woman Key Yemaya Walker, and her 2 year growing journey through school, love, and life period piece, written by Kenneth Suffern, Jr., taking place at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill between the years of 1997 – 1998. Loosely based on true events, and experiences during that time, told through the eyes and voice of the main female protagonist, a freshman first attending the school.