Martin Luther King And Frederick Douglass Essay

1923 Words Nov 23rd, 2016 8 Pages
Martin Luther King Jr. and Frederick Douglass are two African American activists who lived in different centuries. The former fought for African American civil rights in 20th century while the later strived for abolition of slavery in 19th century, but they both carried one single agenda or goal in common –fighting for the equality and integration of African-Americans. In the Letter from Birmingham Jail and the Narrative of an African American Slave, Martin Luther King and Frederick Douglass have similarities and differences in their views of Christianity’s role in the larger context. For example, both Martin Luther King and Frederick Douglass expressed their indignation and criticism towards the white Christian churches for their justification and permission of slavery and segregation, although the tone or the severity of such condemnation differs. Moreover, King also holds more optimism towards the role of Christianity in overcoming the legacies of slavery and segregation and takes a more progressive stance on such matter.
In terms of similarity, Martin Luther King and Frederick Douglass both condemn the role of white churches in perpetuating the slavery and segregation, though the actual substance or the focus of their condemnation varies. In the Letter from Birmingham Jail, Martin Luther King condemned the white churches for their “pious irrelevances and sanctimonious trivialities” (King, 352). That is, the white Christian churches at that time, according to King,…

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