MLK linguistics

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There have been a few LLOG posts focusing on Martin Luther King Jr. over the years, notably "Martin Luther King's rhetorical phonetics" (1/15/2007), "Celebrating the Linguistic Significance of Martin Luther King Jr." (1/17/2016), and "There is No Racial Justice Without Linguistic Justice" (1/15/2018).

A Google Scholar search turns up many MLK-related publications with a linguistic aspect.


  1. Mike Maxwell said,

    January 25, 2020 @ 6:53 pm

    I've often wondered whether Martin Luther King (Sr.)'s parents chose their child's initials intentionally. The Hebrew word for "king" (which is obviously the surname) is melek (sometimes spelled melech), which would in Hebrew script be written without vowels, hence MLK. I've never seen this theory expounded anywhere, so I suppose it's a coincidence.

  2. Rodger C said,

    January 28, 2020 @ 8:47 am

    Probably, but not totally impossible, since he said, "I am in the rather unique position of being the son, the grandson and the great-grandson of preachers."

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