Rhetorical Analysis Of Letter From A Birmingham Jail

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In “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” the Southern Church’s negligence to the exclusion of Negros within the community leads Martin Luther King to be in “deep disappointment.” King argues that the church lacks morality when removing themselves from the protest for segregation. The church was to stand for King’s protest because together, they are all brothers and sisters. Their choice to neglecting the issue leads to King’s disappointment. Religious leaders have yet to understand that the acceptance of Negros is “morally right and because the Negro is [their] brother.” They do the bare minimum by “admonish[ing] their worshippers to comply” with this decree, rather than declaring their followers to abide by it. The church puts no effort into eliminating “[their] nation of racial and economic injustice” because they believe that “those are issues, with which the gospel has no real concern.” The church’s resistance against equality for Negros enrages the reader, utilizing the rhetorical device, pathos. The appeal to the emotions of the readers further continues as King states that he has “wept over the laxity of the church.” He expresses his love for the church, but as he continues his discovery on the issue, he is left discouraged. Frustration towards the church soon strikes the readers as they fully convey King’s desire for the church to change. King’s realization of the church’s transformation to becoming “a weak, ineffectual voice with an uncertain sound,” persuades the reader to take action on the issue. The church …show more content…
As they read his letter, they should feel great remorse for their lack of effort towards ending racism. King’s use of emotional appeal is in the forms of metaphors, parallelism, and repetition. It changes their perspectives and urges them to support the Negros rather than to go against