Rhetorical Devices Used In Letter From Birmingham Jail

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On April 16, 1963. Dr. Martin Luther King Junior, a persistent civil rights leader, addressed 8 white clergymen on the way they responded to the protests from nonviolent Negros. He supports this claim by first emphasizing that all of what is going on is part of their heritage and how everyone has rights, then by telling them breaking the law and standing up for what they believe in embodies the American spirit, and finally indicates the protesters are heroes and they are doing what they can to defend themselves and show others their side of what is going on. Through King’s use of tone, rhetorical appeals, and rhetorical tools he effectively persuades the clergymen and the people of the U.S, to fathom what is happening everyday around them and …show more content…

One rhetorical tool King uses in his letter is pronouns to address the audience. This rhetorical tool addresses a particular audience but it is not necessarily to persuade them at this point. King drops these rhetorical tools throughout the one of them "I am afraid that it is much too long to take, your precious time" (paragraph 5). King talks to the clergyman through this rhetorical tool and addresses them in different ways. King rates with a purpose his purpose is to persuade people and change their opinion on civil rights. At the end of his letter he addresses the clergymen " I also hope that circumstances will soon make it possible for me to meet each of you, not as an integrationist or a civil rights leader, but as a fellow clergymen and a Christian brother" (paragraph 7). This statement makes a claim the king wants to meet these seven clergymen in person and speak about the issues he wrote in this letter. Another rhetorical tool king uses in his letter are similes. This rhetorical tool helps king compare two things and address the point as he sees it. "Over the last few years I have consistently preached that nonviolence demands that the means we use must be as pure as the ends we seek" (paragraph 3). Dr. Martin Luther King Junior attacks the clergyman and speaks what he believes with these similes. King is using real life examples that the clergymen are not seeing. Kind is giving them his side of the story. "But now I must affirm that it is just as wrong, or even more so, to use Morrow means to preserve immoral ends" (paragraph 3). There pare many things that help King’s way of expressing how he feels and what he sees, like pronouns to address the audience and

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