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Book Review: Why We Can’t Wait by Martin Luther King, Jr.

Published on Fri, 02/09/2018 - 01:16pm
Martin Luther King

“…[W]hen you are forever fighting a degenerating sense of ‘nobodiness’—then you will understand why we find it difficult to wait. There comes a time when the cup of endurance runs over, and men are no longer willing to be plunged into the abyss of despair.”

There is power in words.

After penning his “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. ushered in the beginnings of what would become the Civil Rights Movement on the segregated streets of Birmingham, Alabama, in 1963.

Why We Can’t Wait is set apart by the fact that these are not simply words on paper. King was one of the greatest orators of our time; his words are a living history. Through them, we are able to—at least in part—experience the profound realities of the fight for civil rights and the vision and hope of equality for all Americans, regardless of race, color, religion, sex, and national origin.

Tracing the history of the struggle for civil rights, looking to its future, and assessing the work still to be done, King’s book is a powerful analysis of the events surrounding the Civil Rights Movement and the world’s response to his philosophy of nonviolent, direct action.

Since its publication in the 1960s, Why We Can’t Wait has become an indisputable classic and a testament to the courageous vision of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Lisa P. & Mariah H.
Information and Reader Services Department


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