Thoreau Vs King Analysis

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A minority is often considered a weak, small, limited group of people. The majority -- in the context of comparison to the minority -- is essentially society. Society stands as a unifying force among people, connecting them through a structured set of values. King believes that in order to solve his current crisis against racism, the minority should take action. This action does not necessarily need to be in numbers, but in value, voice, and demanding respect. Thoreau agrees with King on this, but takes it further. He believes anyone who disagrees with society -- essentially a minority -- needs to take action against it. Hulme however thinks that the ideals of society are the most powerful and should not be challenged despite the severity …show more content…
King writes specifically to the clergymen who are against his march, “You are quite right in calling for negotiation.” Thoreau however, believes that the only way for an individual to have relevance is through only action, with no negotiation. He writes, “Action from principle, the perception and the performance of right, changes things and relations; it is essentially revolutionary…” This emphasizes Thoreau 's faith in action, in that it is all that is necessary for change. And while King later agrees and promotes action, he does believe greatly in keeping the peace among people while inciting change. This is not an idea considered important to Thoreau, as change and righteousness overwhelms the need for peace. A clear distinction between the two can be inferred from this. Thoreau believes that an individual or a minority can make change only through direct action and with direct action alone. King however, sees negotiation and peacekeeping as a necessity in order for a minority to make change. He does not see them as strong enough, necessarily, to challenge a force such as society without peaceful terms. They therefore have differing perspectives on the overall relevance that a minority holds to its

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