Similarities Between Thoreau And Martin Luther King

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Henry David Thoreau was one of the great American writers. His ideas about “Civil Disobedience” are adapted by many other great individual, like Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. and many others. During the civil right movement in the United States, Martin Luther King Jr. use Thoreau ideas about civil disobedience several times. King was not only a Great leader but also a great writer. He has given some of the greatest speeches, like “I Have a Dream” and many more. King use Thoreau and his ideas as an example to explain his acts and its importance for civil right movement, in his letter from Birmingham Jail. Even though King and Thoreau are from different time, they share the same thought about civil right and civil disobedience. Henry David Thoreau and Martin Luther king Jr. both illustrate that civil disobedience is necessity if there is social injustice present in a society. Thoreau had idealistic thought about government system. He visualizes a perfect government free of harm, fault, and malfunction. At the beginning of his essay he states that, “government is best which governs least… [And] I believe that government is best which govern not at all” (305). Thoreau visualizes and admires a government as a just…show more content…
Thoreau's purpose was to convince his audience to not follow the majority, but do what is felt morally right. He aims to expose the corruption of the government and encourage citizens to take action against civil injustice when necessary. In other hand, King has very similar purposes aiming to disagree with social injustice, but his purposes also include that he was trying to defend himself and his organization, Southern Christian Leadership Conference, from protestors and the government that disagree with his movement for civil disobedience. Thoreau and king both believed that, if there is unjust law in the society than people have right to disobey the authority and fight against the
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