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What you didn't learn about Martin Luther King Jr. in school

Civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. (1929 - 1968) addresses a rally at a church in Birmingham, Alabama, Oct. 14, 1963. (Frank Rockstroh/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)
Civil rights activist Martin Luther King Jr. (1929 - 1968) addresses a rally at a church in Birmingham, Alabama, Oct. 14, 1963. (Frank Rockstroh/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images)

Most Americans are familiar with the hopeful vision of unity presented in Martin Luther King Jr.’s iconic “I have a dream” speech. But scholars say King’s message has been misinterpreted over the years by politicians and members of the public, obscuring his anti-racist philosophies and calls to action.

Peniel Joseph, a professor of history and public affairs at the University of Texas Austin, joins Here & Now‘s Deepa Fernandes. Joseph is also the author of “The Third Reconstruction: America’s Struggle for Racial Justice in the Twenty-first Century.

This article was originally published on WBUR.org.

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