Letter from Birmingham Jail

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Modern Applications of Ancient Rhetoric “Letter from Birmingham Jail” by Martin Luther King, Jr.

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"The faculty of observing, in any given case, the available means of persuasion"

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote his "Letter from Birmingham Jail" after being arrested and booked on April 12, 1963. (Birmingham Police Department)

In the solace of a Birmingham jail in April 1963, King came across an article in the afternoon edition of The Birmingham News that proved energizing. The story, headlined "White Clergymen Urge Local Negroes to Withdraw from Demonstrations," inspired King to pen what many consider a jewel of American literature—"Letter from Birmingham Jail."

Wright, Barnett. "'Letter from Birmingham Jail' Regarded as Jewel of Literature, Passionate Defense of Nonviolence, Indictment of Moderates (photos)." The Birmingham News. 12 Apr. 2013. Web. 24 Feb. 2014.

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