Martin Luther King’s speeches, “I Have a Dream” (August, 1963) and “I See the Promised Land” (April, 1968) and his “Letter from Birmingham City Jail” ( April, 1963) were written at different points of his philosophical and racial journey. I feel that his early pieces are more conservative in nature but that his philosophy and words become fierier and harder, more liberal (radical) as time moves forward and change is not happening with regards to the Civil Rights movement.

The late 1950s showed Martin Luther King setting the groundwork for a nonviolent struggle against segregation by focusing on religion and love. Gandhi’s success through love and nonviolence toppled and empire’s rule in India was a beacon of hope and success that King held high. American Christianity was the background for Martin Luther King and his use of the Bible and love – the agape, Christ-like love, was another strategy incorporated into the non-violent methods of King’s master plan to end segregation. His political ideals were based on the Founding Fathers of the United States – the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.

In the early 1960s, King begins to take on and share a more global perspective and becomes more reflective of the movement. Church bombings are happening in the South. John F. Kennedy is elected, appointing Robert Kennedy as his Attorney General. Freedom Riders, black and white, Christian and Jew, are coming down from the North to aid in the nonviolent demonstrations in the South. The Cold War is amping up, The Cuban Missile Crisis and the Bay of Pigs occupies a lot of the Executive Branch’s focus.