Personal Perseverance in the Works of Maya Angelou
Internationally respected brilliant poet, historian, and author Maya Angelou says “in all my work I try to tell the human truth-what it is like to be human.what makes us stumble and fumbleand fall and somehow miraculously rise and go on from the darkness and into the light (Ebony 96). This theme is consistently exemplified throughout Angelou’s greatly acclaimed autobiographical worksand poems such as I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, Gather Together in my Name, Still I Rise and Phenomenal Women. All of these books depict the true-life stories of Ms. Maya Angelou’s tragedies, and there dreadful conditions she had encountered in her youth.
But in all of Angelou’s novels and poems, she escapes the night to go into the light, leaving all the hurt and shame to prosper in a new life she has created.
Maya Angelou’s autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was the first autobiographical work she released and -her first best-seller. This autobiography left readers and critics in amazement at her story and were impressed by her writing techniques. “I know that not since the days of my childhood, when people in books were more real than the people one saw every day I found myself so moved”-(Baldwin,Critics). In Angelou’s autobiography she recounts a youth filled with disappointment, frustration, and, finally hard-won sovereignty. Sent at a young age of five to live with her grandmother in Arkansas, Angelou learned much from this exceptional woman and the tightly knit community there.
The very essence of these lessons carried her through the hardship and struggles she endured later in her life, including a tragic rape while visiting her mother in St. Louis . .works provide powerful insights into the evolution of black women in the 20th century.
Maya Angelou is living proof that through hard work and personal perseverance anything is possible.
Gather Together in My Name. New York:Random House,1974.
___________.I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. New York:Random House,1973.
Phenomenal Women.New York:Random House,1978.
___________.Still I Rise. New York:Random House,1978.
Rolle,Esther “Down in delta.
” Ebony February 14, 1999, 96.
“James Baldwin and John O.Killans Reviews Of Black Authors Works”
(3 June 1999)
“Maya Angelou the Author”
http://res3.geocites.com/SoHo/Nook/7118/MA.html (3 June 1999)
“Maya Angelou” http://www.ask geeves.com.
/ (3 June 1999)