Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. may have been one of the most influential leaders of his time and maybe even of all time, but it was the way in which he delivered his speeches and who he directed them towards that made him appeal to his listeners. The influence behind King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” and his “I Have a Dream Speech” relied directly on his use of the power of rhetoric and the awareness of his audience. The shift of tones throughout these two works of King is what brings about the way in which the audience is directed and who it is directed towards. “Letter from Birmingham Jail” Dr. King is directly in a non-broadened way addressing clergymen who were putting him to task for the non-violent protests in what they considered to
Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail” was written in Birmingham Jail in 1963 as a response to the Clergymen to explain his actions and also to answer their questions on why he did not call off the demonstrations. King was a civil rights activist who organized a campaign against segregation in Birmingham, Alabama in 1963. In his letter, King uses anaphora and allusions frequently. He also appeals to ethos, logos, and pathos to make his letter a paradigm of effective rhetoric. King uses allusions frequently throughout his letter.
Is Patrick Henry’s “Speech to the Virginia Convention” persuasive? START OUT BY CREATING A THESIS STATEMENT THAT ANSWERS THE QUESTION “WAS PATRICK HENRY’S SPEECH TO THE VIRGINIA CONVENTION PERSUASIVE?” YOUR THESIS STATEMENT WILL BE SOMETHING LIKE: PATRICK HENRY’S SPEECH TO THE VIRGINIA CONVENTION WAS VERY PERSUASIVE BECAUSE HE APPEALED TO ETHOS, PATHOS, AND LOGOS TO CONVINCE HIS AUDIENCE TO VOTE FOR WAR WITH ENGLAND. Then, you will start by saying something like: Patrick Henry appeals to ethos by establishing his own credibility and by adding to his credibility by mentioning God very often in his speech. I. Intro and thesis: Persuasively employs (uses) ethos, pathos, logos II.
King does not take insult to the clergymen’s criticism but he gently counter argues every point they bring up. Letter from Birmingham was a great response to Dr. King’s critics about his actions in Birmingham. He does a great job appealing to their emotions, religious beliefs, and uses logic to answer all their questions. He was an advocacy for equality and fought to his last breath to make sure that the blacks would get the same treatment as
AP Language & Composition Sample Responses to Questions on MLK’s Letter from Birmingham Jail Read as a response to the letter by the clergymen, King’s essay can be approached as a shrewd argument that shows a thorough understanding of its immediate audience. Following his introduction, in paragraphs 2-3 King explains why he is not an ousider; in paragraphs 5-11, he explains how his organization has tried to negotiate and how it will again; in paragraphs 12-14, he refutes the accusation that his organization’s actions are untimely; and in paragraphs 15-22 he presents an argument justifying civil disobedience. In each case, King deftly crafts his response to show that he, in fact, agrees with the claim the clergymen make, but he redefines the terms for them. For example, he agrees that outsiders should not intrude in community issues; then he shows that he is an insider by virtue of his position in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, his concern for justice, and his belief that “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” Thus, King systematically, logically, and (one might argue) respectfully responds to each claim made against him. After these counterarguments, he mounts his own argument.
At the beginning of this passage, King appeals to ethos by addressing their counterargument stipulating that their direct nonviolent protests were “‘unwise and untimely’” (166) using a neutral tone. King not only civilly approaches the counterargument when he states,” One of the basic points in your statement is that the action that I and my associates have taken in Birmingham is untimely…The only answer that I can give to this query is that the new Birmingham administration must be prodded about as much as the outgoing one, before it will act” (166). King utilizes a neutral tone, without any usages of loaded words or strong emotions, to present himself as a level-headed, reasonable character and an educated equal to his audience. King reasonably responds to his opponent’s main point with a rational explanation indicating that their resolve to protest is merely an action to stimulate an administration inclined to maintain the status quo unless a call for change is demanded by the populace. In the effort to persuade his
Letter from Birmingham Jail Rhetorical Analysis “Justice too long delayed is justice denied.” This quote sums up the main purpose of paragraph 13 and 14 in Martin Luther King’s awe inspiring “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, in the letter MLK no longer wants to wait to negotiate with the whites because they've kept him and African Americans waiting for hundreds of years. In order to express his purpose, MLK uses pathos, repetition and creative metaphors to prove why he doesn’t want to wait for someone to give him freedom anymore. The use of pathos in paragraph 14 is illustrated by the powerful examples MLK has given. MLK appeals to his audience’s emotions by using his children as an example for why he cannot wait, “to see tears welling up in her eyes when she’s told funtown is closed to colored children.” (p.13). MLK using kids as an example in the unjustness of slavery evokes a response in the audience, that might not be found if he instead used an adult as an example.
The Balance of Objection and Respect While in jail, Martin Luther King Jr. wrote the letter commonly referred to as the “Letter from Birmingham Jail” as a response to a letter addressed to him earlier from the Clergymen of Alabama in order to refute many of their claims while also appealing to his neutral white audience. Through his use of parallelism, complex periodic sentences and Biblical allusions, MLK Jr. establishes his credibility to the Clergymen as well as the “white moderate” and illustrates to them the necessity of his protest while maintaining a respectful tone that is consistent with peaceful ideology. Although the letter is written in a non-violent tone, MLK’s use of parallelism and repetition throughout the letter demonstrates
President elects Barack Obama uses a variety of techniques to address and unify his audience. Obamas use of second person, directly making reference of his audience, tonight is your answer...it belongs to you...it cannot happen without you, is cleverly employed to demonstrate the importance of the individual and how his victory and future effort to change America will rely on the efforts of the collective. In the mind of his audience, it is used to make people feel a sense of belonging, having their presence acknowledged. In his speech, Obama makes several intersexual references to inspirational orators of the past. One such example is Martin Luther King, the road ahead will be long...we will get there where Obama creates the sense that it will be a tough, arduous journey ahead of America in undoing the damage done by past leadership.
Questions on Rhetoric and Style 3) King’s allusions to biblical figures and events appeal to ethos because he is proving to have credibility in what he is saying since he is referring to the bible, which many people read. Therefore, people will comprehend and trust him. It appeals to pathos since many people are religious, King is utilizing that to connect to other people’s ideas and feelings, therefore people will feel what he is feeling. 11) On paragraph 16 of the “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, Martin Luther King repeats the words “unjust law” which has an important effect on audience. He is describing what unjust laws are to him with a serious tone, but calm at the same time.