Martin Luther King Jr. or Dr. King as he’s more commonly known as was one of the key figures of the American civil rights act in the 1960’s. I have seen a lot of people debating over whether the man was an introvert or an extrovert. I love these kinds of discussions and I would like to add my own voice to the matter. For this article, I am going to present as much information for both sides as I can. I should mention that I am not a historian, nor an expert in psychology. Because of that, I will simply be stating my own opinions on the matter or presenting information from others and no one should be taking this as definitive proof of his actual personality. With all of that said, let’s go!
Martin wasn’t a man who feared the spotlight. He was very comfortable in a crowd of strangers. However, whether he actually enjoyed the attention or merely tolerated it to achieve his goals is heavily debated. He was also known to be very verbal about his goals and ambitions, especially with people that he was close to. According to a blogger by the name of ChrisC99 on Personality Cafe, he says that the man did not shy away from meeting new people.
According to an article on 16 personalities.com, he wasn’t much of a collaborator. He preferred to work in solitude. Additionally, he was very meticulous and cared about the finer details of his work. Many people who were close to him often said that he would keep to himself. The article also states that his more outgoing traits were a result of him pursuing his goals at any cost. Another article about him on Celebrities Galore states that he also gave a lot of regard for his family and close friends. He was very protective of them. I’m an introvert myself and I can say that I’m the same way with my own friends and family members.
In my opinion, I believe that Dr. King was actually an ambivert. I say this because he seems to possess a lot of introverted and extroverted traits. For those who don’t know, Ambiverts are people who fall very close to the middle of the introvert/extrovert scale. If you want to learn more about this, then I would recommend watching Psych2Go’s video “11 Signs You’re an Ambivert”. In that video, one of the points is that Ambiverts often relate heavily to characteristics of both introverts and extroverts.
While we may never know all of the inner workings of Dr. King’s mind (or any historical figure for that matter), I still think it is fun to speculate and theorize like this. Maybe it’s just because I like both history and psychology. Also, the fact that I was able to find several articles discussing this very topic and that everyone had something different to say about it made researching and writing this article even more intriguing for me.
“11 Signs You’re an Ambivert” by Psych2Go. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mdd74Gjqogo
“On Extroverted Feeling and Martin Luther King Jr.” by Anita Ashland. https://medium.com/@anitaashland/on-extroverted-feeling-and-martin-luther-king-jr-b7b469e10a5
“Remembering Martin Luther King., The Advocate” by Leeza. https://www.16personalities.com/articles/remembering-martin-luther-king-jr-the-advocate
“Martin Luther King Jr. personal profile” by Celeberties Galore. https://www.celebrities-galore.com/celebrities/martin-luther-king/home/
“Martin Luther King Jr.: ENFJ or ENFP?” by ChrisC99 on Personality Cafe. https://www.personalitycafe.com/threads/martin-luther-king-jr-enfj-or-enfp.214842/