In James Baldwin's speech/published text, "A Talk to Teachers," he immediately establishes a relationship with his audience. This relationship is established in the following ways:
1. Communal sympathy/apathy- Baldwin states that the times they (he and the teachers) are facing are "dangerous times." He goes on to state that they are "in one way or another aware of that." Here Baldwin is establishing a relationship by showing that he recognizes the dangers of the times as the teachers do. He is associating with them so as to gain their trust.
2. Baldwin, then, acknowledges the importance of teachers by stating that the teachers, as those "who deal with the minds and hearts of young people," must be responsible and "go for broke" when it comes to educating the youth of the nation. Here, Baldwin is stating that teachers are very important in the lives of the young and are needed to "correct so many generations of bad faith and cruelty." As a teacher, one would love to hear this statement being made by someone who is not a teacher.
3. Lastly, Baldwin admits that while he is not a teacher he feels the same way about the youth of today. In the end, Baldwin states what he believes is the purpose of education:
The purpose of education, finally, is to create in a person the ability to look at the world for himself, to make his own decisions, to say to himself this is black or this is white, to decide for himself whether there is a God in heaven or not. To ask questions of the universe, and then learn to live with those questions, is the way he achieves his own identity.
By saying this, Baldwin is showing his support for education, what education needs to provide for the youth, and gains the trust of the teachers to whom he is speaking.
Overall, Baldwin does a wonderful job of creating a relationship with the teachers to which he is speaking because he does not come down harshly on them. Instead, he appeals to their love of children and education which he obviously shares. The teachers are able to see this and accept the "friendship" he is offering through his speech.