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Not often does a revolutionary such as Martin Luther King Jr. come along, and whenever one such person does, the earth trembles as their shock waves of change are felt. Kings pressure of reform for equality during the civil rights movements of the 1960's was felt as a predominant force in those times. Until his untimely assassination in 1968, Kings main tool in conveying his powerful messages to the masses was through his speeches. His diction and rhetoric was stirring and carried much weight when it was used in conjunction with his many biblical references and language. In his perhaps most famous speech, I Have a Dream, Kings opening lines that echo and emulate their originator, President Lincoln, a revolutionary icon and legend in his own time, are the same opening words of conceivably Americas other most recognized lecture; the Gettysburg Address. Kings mannerisms regarding his public speaking are well-placed literary devices and a rhetoric consisting of recurring and accentuated themes. In the I Have a Dream speech, King uses a style of repetition, immersion and demolishing of racial barriers, and an imperative tone. The tone of his speech carries a sense of urgency and imperativeness that can be felt through the obvious and the subliminal. King writes with a style that can be perceived on many echelons of literary meaning. This is obvious in Kings fourth paragraph; there is an unspoken sense of pressure to the reader, but to reinforce that delicate oratory skill, he implements the repetition of the word now. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of God's children. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. It goes on to threaten the problems that will occur if the urgency of this problem of racial mistreatment is continually overlooked. This reinforcement of his point is an attempt to leave a lasting impression on the audience, keeping them in the frame of mind that they were in upon first hearing the speech. The tone also serves as a warning of sorts to all those that have yet to realize the growing unrest regarding the civil rights, or lack thereof. Another tool that sends out a subliminal message of urgency and importance is the tense that King uses. The blending of present with an accent towards future tense, and past (regarding to the dream reference) with an accent pointing to the present sends the audience a message that the content of this speech is imperative and not only should, but must be done. This is accomplished by referencing time orientations further ahead than they where they actually occur. The imperative nature created dictates that this problem requires addressing quickly to avoid any further complications: the problem being the racial discrimination and unfair treatment of blacks. This affirmation of a problem and the need to remedy it led to a Another literary tool used by King in his attempt to gain more followers was his demolition of racial barriers. He wisely used a nonexclusive way of speaking so as to incorporate white supporters for his peaceful protests. He broke down racial barriers with the use of terms such as we, and together that implied brotherhood that perseveres over racial differences. It was these differences that called King to address the black population about the domineering white supremacists that were pro segregation, however Kings methods differed greatly from those other currently being implemented. King included all races to combat this civil rights battle for the cause of equality. I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. This imagery of brotherhood and togetherness is illustrated in various other points throughout the piece, most of them preceded by an I have a dream that signifies the creed of King. However, King remains loyal to his roots with messages of ghettos and Negro. He speaks motivationally of the sad state of affairs of that times perception of the black population and their role; We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream. This manner of speech compels the audience to which it applies to join in order to make a difference. It is with these two approaches of gaining a following that enabled King to become the powerful force he would later be. By gaining the support of overwhelming numbers of blacks, as well as whites looking to make a difference, the numbers of King supporters grew. This was accomplished mostly by not focusing solely on the following of one race, but by breaching the wall of racial division to unite all Americans in an overwhelming tide of change. Perhaps the most obvious, yet most potent literary device used by King was his repetition. This was used to hammer home the point that was being addressed and forcing the audience to remember it. His repetition of key catch phrases lends a hand in enhancing his rhetoric. But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. The repetition of one hundred years makes the listeners conceive the time passed that Negroes have been oppressed, causing a feeling of injustice for time lost. I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal." I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
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Analysis of an Essay of Martin Luther King Jr
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Analysis Of An Essay Of Martin Luther King Jr

Words: 1396    Pages: 5    Paragraphs: 7    Sentences: 57    Read Time: 05:04
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              Not often does a revolutionary such as Martin Luther King Jr. come along, and whenever one such person does, the earth trembles as their shock waves of change are felt. Kings pressure of reform for equality during the civil rights movements of the 1960's was felt as a predominant force in those times. Until his untimely assassination in 1968, Kings main tool in conveying his powerful messages to the masses was through his speeches. His diction and rhetoric was stirring and carried much weight when it was used in conjunction with his many biblical references and language. In his perhaps most famous speech, I Have a Dream, Kings opening lines that echo and emulate their originator, President Lincoln, a revolutionary icon and legend in his own time, are the same opening words of conceivably Americas other most recognized lecture; the Gettysburg Address. Kings mannerisms regarding his public speaking are well-placed literary devices and a rhetoric consisting of recurring and accentuated themes. In the I Have a Dream speech, King uses a style of repetition, immersion and demolishing of racial barriers, and an imperative tone.
             
              The tone of his speech carries a sense of urgency and imperativeness that can be felt through the obvious and the subliminal. King writes with a style that can be perceived on many echelons of literary meaning. This is obvious in Kings fourth paragraph; there is an unspoken sense of pressure to the reader, but to reinforce that delicate oratory skill, he implements the repetition of the word now.
             
              We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of God's children. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.
             
              It goes on to threaten the problems that will occur if the urgency of this problem of racial mistreatment is continually overlooked. This reinforcement of his point is an attempt to leave a lasting impression on the audience, keeping them in the frame of mind that they were in upon first hearing the speech. The tone also serves as a warning of sorts to all those that have yet to realize the growing unrest regarding the civil rights, or lack thereof. Another tool that sends out a subliminal message of urgency and importance is the tense that King uses. The blending of present with an accent towards future tense, and past (regarding to the dream reference) with an accent pointing to the present sends the audience a message that the content of this speech is imperative and not only should, but must be done. This is accomplished by referencing time orientations further ahead than they where they actually occur. The imperative nature created dictates that this problem requires addressing quickly to avoid any further complications: the problem being the racial discrimination and unfair treatment of blacks. This affirmation of a problem and the need to remedy it led to a
             
              Another literary tool used by King in his attempt to gain more followers was his demolition of racial barriers. He wisely used a nonexclusive way of speaking so as to incorporate white supporters for his peaceful protests. He broke down racial barriers with the use of terms such as we, and together that implied brotherhood that perseveres over racial differences. It was these differences that called King to address the black population about the domineering white supremacists that were pro segregation, however Kings methods differed greatly from those other currently being implemented. King included all races to combat this civil rights battle for the cause of equality. I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. This imagery of brotherhood and togetherness is illustrated in various other points throughout the piece, most of them preceded by an I have a dream that signifies the creed of King. However, King remains loyal to his roots with messages of ghettos and Negro. He speaks motivationally of the sad state of affairs of that times perception of the black population and their role; We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream. This manner of speech compels the audience to which it applies to join in order to make a difference. It is with these two approaches of gaining a following that enabled King to become the powerful force he would later be. By gaining the support of overwhelming numbers of blacks, as well as whites looking to make a difference, the numbers of King supporters grew. This was accomplished mostly by not focusing solely on the following of one race, but by breaching the wall of racial division to unite all Americans in an overwhelming tide of change.
             
              Perhaps the most obvious, yet most potent literary device used by King was his repetition. This was used to hammer home the point that was being addressed and forcing the audience to remember it. His repetition of key catch phrases lends a hand in enhancing his rhetoric. But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. The repetition of one hundred years makes the listeners conceive the time passed that Negroes have been oppressed, causing a feeling of injustice for time lost.
             
              I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal. " I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor's lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
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