Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter From Birmingham Jail”
Mostly in your own terms, write a brief one-page, single-spaced summary, restating the main ideas of
Martin Luther King Jr.’s “Letter From Birmingham Jail” (http://www.archives.gov/press/exhibits/dream-
The aim of this assignment is to thoroughly comprehend a text and to translate the essential
meaning of the text into terms accessible to others. You will need to identify the author’s subject,
audience, and purpose.
• Identify the main claims in the text and restate them near the start of your summary.
• Paraphrase the supporting points, examples, and details; use a thesaurus to find
synonyms for key words.
• Condense the original text, keeping your writing within one single-spaced page.
• Be “objective” rather than “critical” – try to narrow down the original, without adding
• Use verbs that capture the author’s argument and analysis.
. Your draft should be at least 1 page in length.