Response paper to I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
”It was awful to be Negro and have no control over my life. It
was brutal to be young and already trained to sit quietly and listen
to charges brought against my color with no chance of defense. We
should all be dead.”
These words pretty much sum up my overall impression of the authors main issues described in the book. Blacks stood below whites, and in some way, it seems the negro population almost had given up the struggle to gain pride and a solid position in society. They are words of failure and surrender, in a sense.
The person behind the quote is Maya Angelou, a black woman who throughout half a century has tried to describe the situation negroes had and still have. She has been honored with several awards, has met two presidents and was selected to be a black respresentative for Martin Luther King jr:s struggle during the sixties. You can without a doubt say that she has made great impact on people in general, by putting much effort into trying to make people really understand the opression the negro population has been through.
She is very descriptive in her writing, which is very evident in I Know why the Caged Bird Sings. The book tells a true story about her childhood. Being only three years old, she and her older brother are sent away by thier parents from St. Louis to a small town in the south called Stamps. In Stamps, they are in the heart of the differences and injustices between whites and blacks. They live in the black part of town with their grandmother (”Momma”) and an uncle who is physically disabled. Momma owns and runs the local black grocery store, in which Maya and her brother Bailey spend alot of time.
The children are one day picked up by their father, and brought to live in St. Louis. The dramatical changes this generates in the childrens’ lives are very evident, and although Maya feels a great difference in treatment o...