·January, 15 1929 Martin Luther King was born in Atlanta
·January,24 1954 He becomes a religious minister of the Baptist Church in Montgomery
·December,1 1955 Rosa Parks was arrested for not leaving her sit on the bus to a white man
·December, 8 1955 Beginning of the 382-day boycott which finished after the abolition of the racist segregation on the buses
·September,20 1958 He is stabbed in the chest by a mentally disturbed woman
·August, 28 1963 Freedom Walk to Washington and King’s speech
·December, 10 1964 He receives the Nobel Peace Prize in Oslo
·April, 3 1968 at 18:01 Martin Luther King is murdered in Memphis
The speech by Martin Luther King, known as “I Have a Dream”, was held on the 28th of August 1963 in Washington, on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in front of a crowd of 250,000 people who had gathered there to commemorate the proclamation of emancipation, written by Lincoln a century ago. It was the peak of the March on Washington organized by King to support President Kennedy, who had just presented to the Congress a measure to give equal rights to all citizens. During the speech King made also some precise requests: an end to racial segregation in schools, effective law-making on the issue of civil rights, protection from police brutality for activists, a minimum wage of $ 2 per hour for all workers and an organ of self-government for Washington, DC(which at the time was governed by a committee).
Martin Luther King Jr., born Michael King, was a Protestant minister, political activist and American civil rights leader. Universally recognized as apostle of non-violent resistance, a hero and champion of the outcasts and the marginalized, “redeemer of the black face,” Martin Luther King always exposed himself on the front lines so that in the American reality of the fifties and sixties all sorts of ethnic prejudices were demolished. He preached love, optimism and non-violent resistance as the safest alternative to passive resignation.
King was first and foremost a black Baptist pastor. And as such, he sets his speech. So it comes out as a strange mix of Afro-American typical musicality, Protestant religiosity and clear and rational logical argumentation. He, using one to engage the crowd, the other to move it and the last to convince it, created a masterpiece of speech. He introduces a slogan, short and sharp, almost rhythmically repeated during the speech, capable of giving the crowd something that they can easily remember: “I have a dream”, a dream, something that is not real, but at the same time something plausible, achievable once they are all together. He brings himself into play talking about his four little children who will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the colour of their skin, making it clear to everyone that he really has a dream. He talks about the Declaration of Independence that mentions that “all men are created equal” and declares to the world that this is not true at all in America in that moment. And all this at the same time controlling and fomenting the crowd to make it ask for itself the only undeniable right of everyone: freedom.