Summary Response-Letter from the Birmingham Jail In this letter, Martin Luther King Jr. describes the current states of injustice and inequality that plague the Negro community during this time as he is writing from his jail cell. He writes to his fellow supporters and brothers and explains the reasons for being in Birmingham in the first place were because he felt it was necessary to protest injustice everywhere. Communities such as Birmingham were known to observe segregation laws that isolated black people from white people and in his opinion were classified as unjust laws. He claims to be a supporter of just laws and a non-violent protestor of unjust laws in which violate human morals and dignity. By citing references of protest such as Jesus Christ, St. Paul, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln, he justifies his current actions for the Negro community and states that he is willing to face the consequences when it comes to protesting for equal rights amongst all Americans.
Subject: The subject of this letter is to state the reason he is in Birmingham for trying to change segregation as social justice and his use of civil disobedience as an instrument of freedom. Occasion: Dr. King is writing this letter from inside Birmingham Jail for being accused of misuse of the law by performing in acts of civil disobedience to show his disappointment at the leadership of the clergy and laws that he and others of the black community deem as unjust. Audience: Although this letter was initially mailed to the eight white clergymen who publicly asked the black community to restrict their Birmingham demonstrations, King meant for his message to reach a much larger audience such as U.S. citizens. King used this letter as
Analysis of “I Have a Dream” and “Letter to Birmingham Jail” In the “Letter to Birmingham Jail” Martin Luther King addresses the criticisms and objections that the white clergymen had made towards his and his affiliated organization’s efforts in trying to end segregation and achieve his and his people’s birth right: the right to be free through nonviolent means. Through the “I Have a Dream Speech” King speaks to his supporters and as well as to the entire nation to make them be fully aware of the injustices they are facing and through this make them stand up to those injustices. Both “Letter to Birmingham Jail” and “I Have a Dream Speech” have the same underlying meaning however. That way too long have the black community been treated wrongly. That way too long have the black nation been “judged by the color of their skin rather than the content of their character (King 815)” and therefore it is time for them to rise and stand up for their rights.
Also mentioning that Birmingham is one of the worst cities to be so ugly and brutal to the colored people all through its history. In my thesis statement I have prepared a few questions: 1-Why does King establish his setting (the Birmingham Jail) and define his intended audience in the first paragraph? How does this information impact the reader and his subsequent words? He wants the audience to feel what he is going through during his jail time in the Birmingham jail. He also wants to show that his actions are non-violent and can have good results.
Toulmin Analysis In the “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, King he responds to a letter written by eight, white Alabama Clergymen to the editor of a newspaper in Birmingham. He wants the audience to believe that the clergymen fail to discuss the circumstances that brought about the demonstrations in Birmingham. In September 1962, King had the opportunity to talk with the leaders of Birmingham economic community. The merchants made many promise such as how they would remove the stores’ racial signs. Upon these agreements, Reverend Fred Shuttlesworth, the leader of the Alabama Christian Movement for Human Rights, (including Martin Luther King) had agreed to delay the peaceful demonstrations.
The protest was over African American voting rights, as few African Americans could vote due to racist whites manipulating the voting system. African Americans shied away from voting because of fear of being harassed or absurd tests were given, such as stating the entire U.S Constitution. Johnson’s purpose of his speech was to convince Congress and Americans everywhere to pass his bill on voting reformation. To help make the speech more effective and convincing, Johnson used rhetorical strategies, such as ethos, logos, and pathos. Johnson’s first part of the speech uses rhetorical qualities that unify the audience and make them sympathize with the victims of voting rights.
He chose to be vocal about his dissatisfaction with his people’s racial predicament. King spoke as though he was speaking on behalf of his entire race. He was a man of his people and represented their needs and desire to gain equality. King spoke directly against authority, not in a malicious way, but more in a way where he offered criticism and ways in which society needed to reform itself. During the 1963 March on Washington, King delivered perhaps his most famous speech called “I Have a Dream.” This speech called for an end to racism and desegregation in America that was still very prevalent at the time.
Angelou says, “ I have little hope for any splendid, rapid rapprochement between the races.” Angelou writes that there is a strong level of communication between blacks and whites, but still will never accept each other as equals. Angelou ends the article with, “ this is the beginning of silence; a long and dangerous silence.” Angelou thinks it’s practically hopeless, or will take a long time. Kapuscinski feels that in certain cities everybody has become one race, and that being equal isn’t hopeless. “ Here we see a revolution that is constructive.” Both articles address different issues on prejudice and experiencing an attempt to overcome racism through being
The letter then talks about why King was in Birmingham. The fundamental reason that King was in Birmingham was because there was inequality there. It says that Birmingham is one of the most segregated cities in the United States. King believed that we are all part of one large union. If something has an effect on one of person, then it will have an effect on everyone.
April 12, 1963 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was arrested for leading a prohibited protest. During his imprisonment he decided to write a letter from Birmingham jail to respond to a public statement of concern. In his letter he discreetly describes why he concluded into direct action and the purpose of his action. Martin Luther King decided to go to Birmingham in a call for help. In addition king went to Birmingham because the injustices were incredulous and segregated.