Why do people say "Letter From A Birmingham Jail" is the best argument ever written?

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ladyvols1 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote a letter to eight clergymen  which ultimately became known as the “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.  This now famous essay was not only effective because of who Dr. King was but also because of how the letter was written.  King, well known for his excellent speaking skills was also considered an effective author.  His excellent command of the English language as well as his ability to include the persuasive techniques made this letter one of the most persuasive ever written.  King used logic, emotion and addressed both sides of the argument in his letter.  He described not only his position on the subject but he also correctly addressed arguments that would be used against his position, stated compromises and resolutions.  His manner of writing assisted him in his ability to reach out and grab the reader.  As a reader of the letter one became invested in the cause and could not resist taking a stand on one side of the issue or the other.          

By addressing all the steps necessary in persuasion, by drawing on the emotions as well as the logic of the argument, and presenting a workable solution, Dr. King had created a literary masterpiece.

"While King was in jail in violation of an injunction to halt the demonstrations, eight of Birmingham's leading Protestant ministers published a letter asking him why violence erupted from the tension his demonstrations caused even though he insisted his was a doctrine of nonviolence. King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" is one of his most eloquent statements of the moral and religious basis for the civil rights movement."