AP English 3 Rhetorical Analysis Essay

712 Words Sep 11th, 2014 3 Pages
In Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream (1963)” speech, he addresses the idea that in order to fulfill the premise that “all men were created equal,” the people of the nation must work together to move past the injustices inflicted on African Americans in order to ultimately grant them their civil rights. King’s claim is supported by first repeatedly alluding to historically renowned milestones in the fight against oppression and illustrating numerous metaphors to create an emotional connection with his audience. King’s “dream” that he frequently mentions is the nationwide unification to work toward a common goal in order to bring integration of all races and coexist without oppression. By establishing his goal, he creates an earnest …show more content…
Early in his speech, he establishes the connection of the Negro people to American society, stating that “America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check that has come back marked ‘insufficient funds.’” Essentially, society has set them up for failure, intentionally creating an environment in which it is impossible to succeed in. Much like the concept of “forty acres a mule,” Negros were deliberately placed in a position of guaranteed failure. When the slaves were freed, they were promised forty acres of land and a mule, but were given no tools to harvest the land. They requested help from other famers, but were swindled out of their land or given land which was implantable, effectively consigning them into being in the same position as they were when they were enslaved. However, King transitions away from a feeling of hopelessness to one of optimism, claiming that although society wants the Negros to feel oppressed, they refuse to believe that “there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of the nation.” They are aware that opportunity and liberty are not things of limited quantity, therefore they should be offered to everyone. The “bank of opportunity” is impossible to go bankrupt because there are unlimited funds, waiting to be distributed out to everyone. The metaphors King connects to the current
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