Ballad of Birmingham

Topics: African American, Martin Luther King, Jr., Figure of speech Pages: 3 (1117 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Ballad of Birmingham

In the poem Ballad of Birmingham, by Dudley Randall, written in 1969, Mr. Randall uses of irony to describes the events of the mothers decision, and also her concern for the welfare of her darling little child. It seems odd that this child would even know what a freedom march is, but this would be considered normal back in the early 1960's, when Mr. Martin Luther King Jr. had rallies and freedom marches to free the African American people from discrimination and segregation (Hunter 6). It also seems very ironic that the young child is acting like an adult in this particular situation (Hunter 12). I think the mother would be the one who would want to got to the march to free her people, not the child. In the poem "Ballad of Birmingham", by Dudley Randall, written in 1969, Mr. Randall uses tone and irony to describe the events of the mothers decisions, and as well as her concern for her child's well being.

In the first stanza irony is used in order to make
reading the poem more interesting. The situation in this first stanza is also very important. The little child is in a desperate situation and wants to help better the lives of the African Americans. Randall also focuses on specific culture here. The speaker is allowing the reader to make a mental picture of one specific march in Birmingham (Hunter 17). But, you know as well as I, that with peace marches and rallies comes violence and hostility. This is exactly what the little girls mother is afraid of, this is why she will not let her go to the march. It also seems weird that her mother is so sure that going to church, instead of going to the march, will be the best thing for her. (Hunter 19-20). Typically, a church is to be a very safe and sacred place where no-one would imagine a bombing or any other type of violence to happen. What is ironic about this is that going to church turns out to be the worst place for her to be (Hunter 21). Something else that strikes me funny is that...
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