Rhetorical Analysis ive been to the mountaintop

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Rhetorical Analysis: I’ve Been to the Mountaintop Martin Luther King, Jr. was the predominant leader of the Civil Rights Movement to end racial discrimination and segregation in the latter half of the twentieth century. As a world-renowned spokesperson advocating nonviolent protest, many of his speeches were centered on peaceful ways to change the unfair treatment and segregation of blacks. His hope was to use these methods of nonviolent protest so that one day all of God’s children, whites and blacks included, would live, and treat each other, as equals. On April 3, 1968, he delivered what would be his final speech, I’ve Been to the Mountaintop, in Memphis, Tennessee, at the Mason Temple (Church of God in Christ Headquarters). …show more content…

He explains to his audience that when the Pharaoh wanted to prolong the period of slavery, all he had to do was keep the slaves fighting among themselves. But when the slaves came together, that was the beginning of getting out of slavery. Thus, the civil rights community must stay unified in order to achieve what they want. Still in the past, King next reminds his audience of their success in Birmingham, Alabama. Through these remarks, King restores their faith, telling them that they had done it once, so there was no reason why they couldn’t successfully protest again. To explain his intentions for how they should go about protesting this time, King first deems it necessary to reassure his audience of their First Amendment privileges that they should receive for living in the United States. To do so, he uses the rhetorical device of repetition for the third time by saying that “Somewhere I [he] read” about certain freedoms that all citizens should be granted—multiple indirect references to the Constitution’s Bill of Rights. At the end, he says, “Somewhere I read that the greatness of America is the right to protest for right” (King 4), brilliantly adding an antanaclasis that further embellishes the rhythmic manner of his speech. He is simply appealing to logos again in this instance; by recalling words from one of the most important documents in the country’s history, he is providing factual justification for the nonviolent protests he is about to

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