Rhetorical Strategies In Letter From Birmingham Jail

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In the letter “Letter from Birmingham Jail, Martin Luther King Jr. writes to the Clergyman to express his idea on the racial discrimination and injustice going on in Birmingham Alabama. Martin Luther King Jr. writes his letter while being held in Birmingham Jail after being arrested for participating, in a non-violent anti segregation march. During this time violence against African Americans was so bad in Birmingham it needed to be addressed and taken care of. Martin Luther King Jr. uses rhetorical strategies in his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” in order to convince the religious leaders of Birmingham that they could wait no longer for justice and that the only course was direct action. The religious leaders of Birmingham wrote a letter, “A Call for Unity”, were they expressed a concern about how racial discrimination should be handled by the courts and how it is not King’s Place, for he is an outsider, to interfere with the injustice in the City of Birmingham. Mr. King in return, writes his letter to prove his credibility on the subject of discrimination and injustice. He uses the appeal of ethos to establish his credibility on the matter, by allowing himself to be viewed at the same level as the…show more content…
He evokes emotion on his audience by discussing the trials and injustice African Americans have endured. In his letter he uses examples like “when you have seen hate-filled policeman curse, kick, and even kill your black brothers and sisters.” and “when you have seen vicious mobs lynch your mothers and gathers at will and drown your sisters and brothers at whim” to make his audience envision and feel what many negroes felt while watching their families put up with this mistreatment. King provides imagery to make the audience see what it would be like to be an African American in the united
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