Martin luther king jr - Research Paper Example

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Name of Professor The Making of a Civil Rights Leader Introduction ` I have no doubt that the question of the relationship of the American Negro to Africa is one of great importance. I am convinced that we have a moral as well as a practical responsibility to keep the civil rights movement in America close to our African brothers.1 -Martin Luther King, Jr…
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Download file to see previous pages This is also the case with his experiences in different regions of the African world, and of his successes and efforts in support of African emancipation.2 These experiences and efforts influenced King’s ideas of racial circumstances in the United States in reflective and philosophical ways, and they reveal a connection between King and the pervasive attention given to Africa and matters related to being African among blacks since the latter part of the 1960s. The thoughts and influence of King on Africans and the issue of African Diaspora is the focus of this research paper. A great deal of emphasis is given on King’s appreciation of ties and responsibilities between individuals of African lineage far and wide, and on his influences on the fight for African emancipation and self-determination. The pro-independence components in King’s ideas were conclusively shown in those areas of his oral and written works wherein he concentrated on particular issues confronted by individuals of African lineage all over the globe.3 His emphasis on the situation of his fellow Africans in the U.S. has been widely studied and well documented. King articulated a profound concern for Africa’s fight against colonialism and racial discrimination. He proclaimed in 1956, “We could turn our eyes to Africa and notice there two hundred million black men and women under the pressing yoke of the British, the Dutch and the French. For years all of these people were dominated politically, exploited economically, segregated and humiliated”.4 King proclaimed a year afterward that “you also know that for years and for centuries Africa has been one of the most exploited continents in the history of the world”--- “the continent that has suffered all of the pain and affliction that could be mustered up by other nations”.5 King believes that the mistreatment and coercion imposed on Africa over the years were most apparent in the slave trade, which plundered West Africa’s Gold Coast. He also emphasized that the misuse and abuse of Africa by the white civilizations persisted until the 20th century, inhibiting not just the progress and expansion of West Africa, but the Union of South Africa and other areas of eastern, southern, and northern Africa.6 King’s perception of the African situation in general pushed him to believe in 1959 that “It is impossible for Angola to stand in Africa and not be affected by what is happening in Nigeria and Kenya and Rhodesia.”7 The interest of King in Africa was widely expressed in a variety of ways. In 1957, he positively responded to a private request from Prime Minister Kwane Nkrumah of Ghana to see the liberation of the Gold Coast. King’s wife, who accompanied him in the trip, portrayed the invitation of Nkrumah as “one of the most exciting things that happened to us,”8 and stressed that the prime minister “knew America well and had invited a number of outstanding American Negroes to share Ghana’s great day.”9 King also talked about the significance of the invitation of Nkrumah, arguing that it was an encouraging assertion of the Montgomery struggle and of the bonds that were forged between the Gold Coast and African Americans. The visit to Ghana, which is described in numerous documents as the “King’s first sojourn on the continent of his fathers” ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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