Letter From Birmingham Jail

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Jonathan Edwards, one of the most influential leaders for the puritan religion, delivered a speech on July 8th, 1741 titled “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” which informed his audience that God is the only thing holding them up over the pits of Hell. While on the other hand, Martin Luther King Jr, an American civil rights activist and author, writes a letter, “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” while held prisoner in Birmingham City Jail addressing eight Clergyman who condemned his protests throughout the city. Both Edwards and King use different variations of rhetorical devices to convey their messages to each of their audiences. Edwards uses negative imagery and metaphors to convince his audience that God is the only thing holding them up over the pits of Hell, and King uses metaphors and allusions to convey his message that the clergymen need to get on board with the civil rights movements or they will be …show more content…
One of the rhetorical devices King uses in his letter is metaphors, King asserts, “[...] Funtown is closed to colored children, and see ominous clouds of inferiority beginning to form in her little mental sky[...]”(King) The metaphor used here also contains pathos, making his audience, the clergymen, feel bad for the little girl. And at the same time, they start to understand why the civil rights is needed. King’s other strategy is allusions. He claims,”But though I was initially disappointed for being categorized as an extremist [...] was not Jesus an extremist for love:” (King) Here, King compares himself to Jesus. And the clergymen, being men of God, will see what King is doing is similar what Jesus was put in jail for. Then the clergymen will start to understand why King’s protests for the civil rights movement are a good

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