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Martin Luther King: The Essential Box Set  By  cover art

Martin Luther King: The Essential Box Set

By: Clayborne Carson,Kris Shepard,Peter Holloran,Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Narrated by: Keith David,Jay Gregory,Martin Luther King,Clayborne Carson
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Publisher's summary

For the first time ever, 24 original recordings of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., from his iconic "I Have A Dream" speech to his stirring sermon "A Knock At Midnight," are collected together in this treasured box set. His landmark speeches that echoed around the world and the more intimate sermons from the churches where he carried out his ministry are just as moving and meaningful today as they were when the great orator first expressed them.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s speeches stirred a nation to change - and his calls to peaceful action and refusal to turn to despair or violence in the face of injustice continue to inspire the world today. Each of the twelve sermons and speeches collected here is accompanied by an introduction by other renowned theologians and champions of civil rights, including Archbishop Desmond Tutu, His Holiness the Dalai Lama, Rosa Parks, Reverend Billy Graham, Bishop TD Jakes, Aretha Franklin, Senator Edward M. Kennedy, and Representative John Lewis, who share their priceless firsthand testimony on the events that inspired the delivery of King's message.

This definitive box set includes all the landmark speeches of the great orator and American leader Martin Luther King, Jr., from his inspirational "I Have a Dream" to his firey "Give Us the Ballot." Comprised of recordings previously included in A Call to Conscience and A Knock at Midnight, The Essential Box Set is a must-have for any home, library, or school collection. 

©2009 Hachette (P)2009 Hachette

What listeners say about Martin Luther King: The Essential Box Set

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From his own mouth

If there is a print version of this book, it lacks the one thing that makes this reading great, actual recordings of the voice of Martin Luther King, Jr. This is a two-part set of the speeches and sermons of MLK. The first half is the speeches, including his most famous speeches such as "I Have A Dream," his Nobel Peace Prize speech, and his speech on the Montgomery Capitol steps after the march from Selma. Hearing his own words in his own voice shows how great a communicator he truly was.
The second half is his sermons. There are several sermons that could be read today in any church and they would be just as powerful today as they were when he first delivered them. With today's social struggles, perhaps it would be good to replay this to the population at large. It is clear in many of these speeches just how much the struggle of non-violence was taking out of him as you can hear the weariness in his voice.
Each sermon and speech is introduced by a person who was instrumental in the life of MLK. The opening speech, his speech before the Bus Boycott, was written by Rosa Parks and read by Coretta Scott King and is by far the most powerful introduction in the book. Many of the other introductions were interesting but some ended up being either braggadocios for their relationship with MLK or an introduction to himself/herself with King as an afterthought. During the introductions, I wanted to speed up the speed to 1.75 (my normal listening speed) to get through them. Of course, when Dr. King spoke, I always set it back to 1.00 speed because I wanted to hear it in his cadence, his emotions, and his real voice.
Highly recommended.

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22 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars

A Great Resource!

The collection of originally delivered speeches is a preciious research. The reading of letters written by the history-makers involved in his campaigns and anecdotes of those present help to establish the contextual settings of the speeches.

I think it's great!

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18 people found this helpful

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Martin Luther King Jr. is at his best in this set!

I have learned more about Martin Luther King Jr. and listening to this wonderful set of sermons and speeches than I have ever learned throughout my 50+ years of listening and watching Martin Luther King Jr. on radio/TV or in the classroom.

It's great to be able to listen to the "great leaders of the day" (Rev. Franklin, Sen. Edward Kennedy, Rev. Franklin Graham, et al) as they introduce and frame the various speeches. It gives a nice touch and context to what was going on in society that Martin Luther King Jr. was concerned about and speaking on.

Fantastic!!!

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10 people found this helpful

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  • Al
  • 09-30-18

audio is a barrier

I love that it includes real speech recordings of MLK Jr - but it is incredibly hard for me to understand what's being said because the recording audio is such low quality. I get that that's what it is - but I love the subject matter and am sad that I haven't been able to get through the book because I can't understand 80% of what's being said. if audio folks cleaned up the sound before it got included in this I'd be surprised

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Worth Every Minute

This audiobook met and exceeded my expectations. The speeches and sermons speak for themselves and are of pretty clear quality given the passage of time.

What struck me most was that Rev. King could be speaking of America circa 2015, rather than 50+ years prior. My favorite speech was "Where Do We Go From Here?" It signaled a clear transition of King from a Black Civil Rights crusader to a crusader for equal justice, peace and opportunity for all, although those themes were in all of his speeches heretofore. Speaking out against war (in this case, Vietnam) and linking it to the poverty struggle and opportunity deficit of all less fortunate Americans would have been illuminating to the masses and threatening to the Established Order. To me, a man in my 30s, it showed me that King was willing to do what it took to chalk the Establishment and inform and unite the masses.

The speakers introducing each speech/sermon did not try to outdo King, but added context to the time and place, which I found I appreciated. They also pointed out to me that King was not alone in the work he did.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this book to anyone interested in learning more about this man and his Dream.

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Well worth the read!!

Excellent read! It made me more appreciative of the magnitude one man had on our nation. I cannot put into words how much this book's importance is to me. It reawakened my conscience to what has really been accomplished for my people and this nation as a whole. It will inspire you to keep moving towards advancements for all.

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4 people found this helpful

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11/10 Would Listen Again

This audiobook gave me LIFE. No matter if I was in a bad mood on the way home from work, or needed a pick-me-up any old time, MLK would get me amped. Sometimes sad, sometimes elated, sometimes indignant-- but always motivated. The introductions by various pastors, actors, activists, and other people of note are also amazing. They pack a ton of history into this book.

MLK was a prophet and being able to listen to his voice and his words is a gift.

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Why not better known?

I was born in 1976 and am a Christian. I grew up in a church that never taught me about Dr. King. That is a big deal as I have never heard of a man who more modeled the sermon on the mount in my time than him. This was a wonderful reproduction and should be heard in all churches that follow Jesus. Thank you!

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More than just "I have a dream!"

Inspirational, emotional, profoundly intelligent and down to earth.

For every little guy, minority and underdog. Not just about civil rights and God, but how to turn the other cheek, put your priorities in order, spread love. The only self-help book you need, really.

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Subchapters please

Organization of content: 5
Dr Kings authentic speeches and sermons: 5
Audible Chapter organization: 3

Audible, please put a little more care into how items are organized on your end. I sometimes just want a Dr. King speech or sermon. I love the intros, but should not have to scroll-guess by hand to find the speech.

This is a digital copy. It is a program. It would not be difficult to hire a programmer to allow for different organization of content.

Please take a moment to think about what would be useful to all listeners and use chapter breaks a little more thoughtfully.

Adding subchapter headings would do the trick.

Not to Audible: I have come across other texts, very long ones, that actually are not worth it due to a failure of having enough chapter headings to navigate through.

This cannot be the definitive King recording without chapter options or subheadings, which is too bad, because Clayborne is awesome and it should be.

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