Rhetorical Devices In Letter From Birmingham Jail

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In Doctor Martin Luther king’s letter from a Birmingham jail, he transmits a message from the nonviolence protestors to the Birmingham clergymen about the injustice against black people. Dr. King was arrested and sent to jail in order to hold the protests. During 1963, segregation was taking over Birmingham, churches, libraries and even businesses were facing violence and constant discrimination, leaving the city a difficult and unsafe place to live for many African Americans. Through his letter, Dr. King expresses his disappointment with Birmingham and those who criticized his beliefs and movement. He defended his right to be there transmitting feelings and emotions on the matter. Dr. King’s civil rights movement started in 1955 heading …show more content…

king implies the rhetorical technique alluding to the bible. By comparing the prophets that the left their village and carried their “Thus saith the lord “ in the eight century B.C just like apostle Paul carrying the gospel of freedom, king believed in future changes with his presence in Birmingham (576). Dr. king continues alluding to the bible by using ethos as a strategy to get to the audience. He added credibility to his words and ethical meaning “love your enemies, bless them that curse you, pray for them that despite full use you “ () “let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like a mighty …show more content…

king states the reason of his presence in Birmingham by starting with an anecdote on how everything began. He explains that “ several months ago the affiliate here in Birmingham asked us to be on a call to engage in a nonviolent direct action program “ Dr. king restates that its an invitation by saying “I am here because I was invited here”. By these words, Dr. Martin Luther king transmits a valid reason to the audience proving the real reason behind the movement that was happening at that moment. He responded to the clergymen, who had criticized his appearance in Birmingham he also refers to the negotiations mad with the leaders of Birmingham’s economic community. False promises were made about removing humiliating signs from stores. By narrating multiple events, Dr. king lets the audience understand his visit in Birmingham, and what his intentions behind his

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