An Analysis Martin Luther King's Letter From Birmingham Jail

Topics: Martin Luther King, Jr., Logic, Southern Christian Leadership Conference Pages: 2 (616 words) Published: May 31, 2012
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., in his Letter from Birmingham Jail, argued to his equality supporting peers that non-violent and instigative protests, while not as dignified as court battles, were fundamentally more potent and provocative. King successfully produced an appealing and effective message by integrating pathos and logos, utilizing faith based ethos, suitable literary devices, and a unique subtle tone that allowed him to maintain even-tempered and reasonable appeal in subject he was passionate and infuriated about.

King wins the credibility of his peers by, firstly establishing they are his peers. He reminds them of his position as a reverend by citing the Alabama clergymen as “fellow clergymen”. Referring to his position as president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and his invitation not Birmingham, he further established credibility by highlighting he is not merely a reverend creating social upheaval but a revered civic and religious leader whose presence is desired by the people of the city. He constantly reminds readers of his religious credibility by integrating Christian morality and principles into pathos and logos.

Recognizing that racial equality is an equally logical, spiritual, and emotional argument, King integrates logos and pathos in his arguments. This effectively provides them concrete reasons why his ways are superior while reminding readers how pressing the matter is. This allows King to appeal to readers emotions while providing logical reasons to support his methods. In example, in paragraph eight King begins his argument with logic. He established that lack of direct action has significant realized consequences. He directly links non-violent protest and social and political pressure that removes ignorance. In the following paragraphs he utilizes ethos to emphasize that the matter is exigent. His emotional appeal authenticates the reality of the situation. Highlighting realized consequences of postponement...
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