A Rhetorical Analysis on Dr. Martin Luther King’s “I have a Dream”

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On the epoch of America’s civil-rights movement, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave the supreme exemplification of insurgency through a peaceful march of 200,000 people on Washington D.C. (Anson L.). There he delivered the most powerful speeches of all time known as “I Have a Dream”. On August 28, 1963, at the Lincoln Memorial, this revolutionary civil rights leader through his stirring speech epitomized an objective for the black inhabitants of the America. His speech had the rationale to move billions of Americans to stand up for the rights of the blacks. The social and racial segregation of that segment of time brought a huge response to the overpowering speech which gave the “black activists a vision for the future” (Anson L.). “I have a dream” is predominantly looked upon for its emotive rhetoric and its illustration of a prospect of brotherhood. This rhetorical analysis will focus on a few major points, such as, the appeals Dr. King uses, which is mostly pathos, to make this speech a persuasive one; the arguments he makes about the unfulfilled American dream of true independence and democracy and the urgency of taking an action against inequality; the stylistic or rhetorical devices brought into play; the relation and affect of the title to the speech. The most appealing rhetoric in this speech is pathos, used cleverly in the sense of persuading people with an emotional plea. Dr. King, through the use of pathos, tried to make it discernible that his aim was to “make the
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