Effective Use of Language in Martin Luther King's Letter from Birmingham Jail

1395 Words Jun 1st, 2010 6 Pages
In April 16, 1963 Martin Luther King wrote a letter from Birmingham jail that was addressed to the eight leaders of the white Church of the South, the “white moderates”. Dr. King’s letter talks about how unfair the white Americans were towards the black community, and how true civil rights could never be achieved.
Throughout his letter, King talks about how unfair the white Americans were towards the black nation, he talks about the disrespect, unfair and unjust treatment the black community had received from the white Americans. In the letter King’s response is very moving and effective to the readers, he has achieved this by effective use of language, stylistic devices such as the use of imagery, similes and metaphors, and by using
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Dr. King encourages readers to think about the question and what the obvious answer must be.

Finally, Martin Luther King makes his letter effective by showing disappointment from the white Americans, “ I had hoped the white moderate would see this need. Perhaps I was too optimistic; perhaps I expected too much”, Dr. King shows how disappointed he is from the white moderates, and how he had expected more to come out from them, but he has been let down. He makes them look at what they should be doing in order to stop segregation, but instead, they’re not doing anything. “As in so many past experiences, our hopes had been blasted, and the shadow of deep disappointment settled upon us”, Dr.King again shows how disappointed the black community had been ever since, and until that day, they were still disappointed, since no action was done in order to stop this civil disobedience. Dr. King gives readers an image of an explosion, where all the black people’s hopes have blasted, shattered and gone away, which resulted in disappointment. “Inspite of my shattered dreams, I came to Birmingham with the hope that the white religious leadership of this community would see the justice of our cause end with deep moral concern… I had hoped that each of you would understand. But again I have been disappointed” Dr. King once again mentions the

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