King also invokes authority through the Declaration of Independence King quotes

King also invokes authority through the declaration

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King also invokes authority through the Declaration of Independence. King quotes the rights that “all men were endowed with, yes black men as well as white men.” “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” and “unalienable rights” (King), these help bring a supreme force on his side and in doing so, brings many other people to his side. He is saying that the government has failed an obligation that they had to ALL people. King is establishing his own credibility here by using a great American and the constitution as a vessel.
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The strongest rhetorical strategy King employs is Anaphora, which he uses throughout his speech, which is the repetition of the same word or group of words at the beginning of his sentences. He begins his speech after alluding to Lincoln’s address by repeating the phrase “One hundred years later…” (King) this helps emphasize King’s point of the hardships that the Negro people have been through at this point in time. With everything that has been done, one hundred years later, they are still facing many of the same problems that they were facing one hundred years ago. This helps set King up for the rest of his speech by saying that one hundred years later, things are not the way they should be. Early on in King’s speech, he urges the audience to seize the moment by repeating the phrase “Now is the time” four times in the sixth paragraph. He emphasizes the fact that they are going to no longer accept how things are now, and that this day marks the day of change. No longer will people just have to settle with the way things are. No longer will they have to deal with racial discrimination. No longer will the white man usurp the power of the black man. From this day on, people will no longer be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character, as King referred to earlier in his speech with the example of his children. Further into the speech further repeats the phrase ‘”we must” to emphasize the importance of their course of action. “We must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force”. (King) Here King stresses the fact that even though the white man has used great amounts of violence on the black man in the past, they must still take the high road and choose the path of non- violence.
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The use of metaphors are also are dominant rhetorical strategy used throughout King’s speech, particularly in the first half. King contrasts dark and light metaphors when he says “this momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves, who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a
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