Martin Luther King Jr was one of the most prominent advocates of the Civil Rights movement during the 1960s. In contrast to some civil rights activists Martin Luther King generally promoted a non-violent strategy of social change. (This policy of non-violent resistance drew inspiration from similar campaigns by Gandhi in India’s Independence struggle. For his efforts he was awarded the Nobel Peace prize in 1 1964  [Punctuation: Where is it?  In names, end of sentence.  –Miss McCulla]  

Early Life

Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in Atlanta on 15 January 1929. Both his father and grandfather were pastors in an African-American Baptist church, King would also later follow them into the ministry. [Run-on sentence. Technically, a comma splice, when two sentences are joined together with only a comma in between. See Commas.  –Miss McCulla]King attended Morehouse College in Atlanta, (segregated schooling) and then went to study at Crozer Theological Seminary in Pennsylvania and Boston University. It was at the university that King became aware of the civil rights struggle and he took the opportunity to study Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violent strategy for social change. [Again, when you join two sentences, especially long ones, just using “and” is not enough.  A comma is also needed before the conjunction. –Miss McCulla]  In 1953 King married Coretta Scott, who herself had many artistic and intellectual talents. The following year King became pastor at Dexter Avenue Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama.

[For students:  Short Biographies or Profiles make perfect subjects for Informative Essays.  CAUTION:  It is easy to slip into plagiarism in these papers.  An essay should not read as a Wikipedia entry!  Add your personality through your tone (casual and personal). Decisions you make about which facts to emphasize and which to omit is also an editorial decision!   –Miss McCulla]

Montgomery Bus Boycott

A defining moment in the civil rights struggle was to a large degree instigated by M.Luther King who was the president of the Montgomery Improvement Association.

It [What is “it”?] began on 5 December 1955, when Rosa Parks a civil rights activist refused to given up her seat breaking the strict segregation on Montgomery’s buses. [This sentence needs commas. –Miss McCulla]King inspired black residents to launch a bus boycott which lasted well into 1956, this gained substantial media coverage and in December of the following year the United States Supreme Court declared the segregation unconstitutional and the buses were desegregated. [This sentence is rambling with a comma splice in one place. It should be two sentences at least.]

Civil Rights Movement

Following the success of this action[,] the civil rights movement gained strength. King and other ministers founded the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) in 1957. There was often disagreement about how to proceed with different groups pursuing different strategies. This split would become more significant in the 1960 with substantial disagreements between groups such as Black Power and Malcolm X Black Nationalist groups.

Speeches of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King was one of the world’s greatest orators. His deep and powerful voice was able to captivate audiences. His speeches caused him to become one of the most well known civil rights leaders. In 1963 he was named as Time’s Man of the Year. It was in August of 1963 that King delivered his famous and iconic “I have a Dream Speech”. [Period goes in the quotation marks.  See this article: Quotation Marks.] The speech was given at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C during the 250,000 March for Civil Rights.

Last Years

However his opposition to the Vietnam War in the later part of the 1960s caused friction and strained relations with the Johnson administration. It also led the FBI to undermine King’s leadership. [This is a point that needs elaboration! –Miss McCulla]

In April 1968 Martin Luther King delivered his final address “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” whilst [whilst? ?] supporting striking sanitation workers in Memphis, The next day, 4 April 1968, King was assassinated.

To this day, King remains a potent symbol of the African American Civil Rights Movement. His speeches offer a striking exposition of the ideals behind the Civil Rights Movement.


Miss McCulla is a retired English teacher of 32 years.  She has Mastery of the grammar and mechanics of English, and has taught expository writing, fictional writing, and rhetorical skills to hundreds of students and aspiring writers throughout her career.  She has written/edited/self-published five books and currently writes for and edits a writing blog called The Underground Tutor where she gathers essays, articles, entries, papers, manuals, profiles, criticisms, and analyses of literature, just like those asked of students and writers    in the university and publishing houses.

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March 15, 2019   52   mary    Informative Essay  
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