Rhetorical Devices In Letter From Birmingham Jail

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“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere,” Martin Luther King Jr. writes in his Letter from Birmingham Jail in August 1963. Injustice engulfs Birmingham and King demands change and equality. Martin Luther King is the backbone of the Civil Rights Movement. He was one of the many figures to set-forth a domino effect in the fight for equality for African Americans. The purpose of his letter was to get the point across that people have a moral responsibility to break unjust laws and to take direct action instead of waiting for justice to be served. Throughout his letter, he uses many rhetorical devices and specific word choices to advance his purpose and claim. Martin Luther King provides an effective argument using ethos, pathos, and logos. …show more content…

He establishes this from the very start of the argument. In the very first paragraph, he sets the tone for the letter stating, “ I feel like you are men of genuine good will and your criticisms are sincerely set forth, I would like to answer your statement in what I hope will be patient and reasonable terms,” this is because he believes in nonviolence and peace. Also, he develops his authority in the second paragraph by replying to the clergymen’s view that he was a stranger coming in. He explains that anyone who lives inside the U.S is never to be considered an outsider (Paragraph 4). He also reveals that he is in Birmingham with several members of his staff because he has basic organizational ties here. This clearly maintains his credibility on claims & arguments throughout his

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