“I HAVE A DREAM” by MARTIN LUTHER KING
Martin Luther king was an afro-American born in Atlanta (1929). Most of his life was dedicated to the struggle against races discrimination. We can define Martin Luther King as a pacifist who fought for peace and the equality of the human rights, a dreamer who fight for a better world and an apostle of justice. During the 1950s and 1960s he dedicated the most time of his life to abolish the differences between whites and blacks; this is to say, to end up with racism and to establish the same rights for everybody. In 1963 he did a speech defending their thoughts of equality and peace around the world. It was in Washington, the capital of United States. It was a touching discourse and an amount of people were supporting him. The speech was called “I have a dream” in which I am going to analyze a part of it, focusing on his idyllic model of society. During the speech, Martin Luther king repeated eight times “I have a dream” this was just one of the eight occurrences of anaphora in the speech.
Repeating is a way to emphasize phrases in order to catch the public’s attention. His messages were reproduced in a metaphorical way and his thoughts were very optimistic “We will be able to speed up that day when all God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands” (1963: 150-152). As we see, although the racial discrimination that was evident in that time, he saw a light of hope for changing the society. He supported the statement that there could not be differences between races because all the mankind has been created with the same rights.
Therefore, his dream was to create a world with justice and specially, the reconciliation of blacks and whites. “I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: we hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal”( 1963: 97-99). He wished that all the citizens of United States realized that all the humans have been created to be equals, with the same rights. “I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood” (1963: 103-105). He wanted to honor those who came from a black-slave family. On one hand, he wanted that the sons of black slaves did not revenge for the submission of their parents by the former slave owners, so they had to overcome the doleful memories and forgive the sons of former slave owners. On the other hand, the sons of former slave owners did not have to see blacks in an inferior position because they came from a slave family. “I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice” (1963: 106-108). Mississippi was well known for its unfair place in terms of race discrimination, so that, he wanted that the states became a place full of harmony and fraternity. “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character” (1963: 109-110). This is one of the main reasons that he struggled for.
He wanted that their children, and the other children, could live in a world where everyone were judged and respected for their qualities and capacities of knowledge, rather than where they came from. “I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers” (1963: 112-115). Alabama was another state where racism was around. His whishes were to create a state where all the children, white or black, could play, help, and join each other with no differences between social, cultural and economic classes. “I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together” (1963: 118-120). As we see, he mentioned the Lord. Indirectly, he wanted to introduce a religious model of society where God was always present. Not only imposing Christian religion but also imposing a kind of values that all religions support. We cannot forget that he belonged to a very religious Christian family.
Moreover, in this paragraph and in others paragraphs too, Martin Luther King makes numerous geographic references throughout the speech (Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Rockies of Colorado, Mountain of Tennessee, New Hampshire, New York, …) It shows that he addressed to every citizen of the Unites States, without forgetting any state. Finally, we can see that his dreams, after some years, came true. Nowadays, The United States of America are fifty states were everyone is accepted, are a multicultural states consist of many ethnics groups and they live together with harmony. Personally, this powerful speech helped me to understand Martin’s Luther King ideology in a deeper way. Moreover I enjoyed reading and analyzing “I have a dream”, an speech that makes someone thinks about how cruel was the black people life hundreds years ago. And at the same time, this text shows the efforts that Martin Luther King (among others) did in order to establish the equality between humans.