Clarence Jones and MLK’s “I Have a Dream” Speech


When the Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered the “I Have a Dream” speech in August, 1963, the “I Have a Dream” section wasn’t part of the prepared text. There’s a story behind that and most everything about the speech, the march on Washington that attracted some 250,000 people and the movement behind both.

Joining us today is Clarence Jones, an advisor to Dr. King. and one of his speech writers. Jones helped draft the “I Have a Dream” speech and stood just a few yards from King as he delivered the address that day.

Mr. Jones is a Scholar in Residence and Visiting Professor at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Research & Education Institute at Stanford University and his latest book, “Behind The Dream: Inside the Speech That Transformed a Nation” was published in January.

In it, he provides a never before disclosed, first person 72-hour narrative description of inside the organization of the March On Washington For Jobs and Freedom, and Dr. King’s preparation and delivery of his “I Have A Dream Speech” on August 28th, 1963.

Jones will be giving a lecture on Wednesday, April 20, at 7 p.m. at The Jeanne B. McCoy Community Center for the Arts in New Albany.

Watch: Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have A Dream” Speech

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