"His life informed us, his dreams sustain us yet."*
On August 28, 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. stood in front of the Lincoln Memorial looking out over thousands of troubled Americans who had gathered in the name of civil rights and uttered his now famous words, "I have a dream . . ." It was a speech that changed the course of history.
This fortieth-anniversary edition honors Martin Luther King Jr.'s courageous dream and his immeasurable contribution by presenting his most memorable words in a concise and convenient edition. As Coretta Scott King says in her foreword, "This collection includes many of what I consider to be my husband's most important writings and orations." In addition to the famed keynote address of the 1963 march on Washington, the renowned civil rights leader's most influential words included here are the "Letter from a Birmingham Jail," the essay "Pilgrimage to Nonviolence," and his last sermon, "I See the Promised Land," preached the day before he was assassinated.
Editor James M. Washington arranged the selections chronologically, providing headnotes for each selection that give a running history of the civil rights movement and related events. In his introduction, Washington assesses King's times and significance.
*From the citation of the posthumous award of the Presidential Medal of Freedom to the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., July 4, 1977