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“I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou Analysis

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In the selection from I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou shows the importance of not judging a book by its cover through the narrator’s interaction with a wealthy woman within the community, Mrs. Bertha Flowers.

Marguerite looks at Mrs. Flowers as the “aristocrat of black stamps” having “the grace of control to appear warm in the coldest weather, and the Arkansas summer days it seemed she had a private breeze which swirled around, cooling her”. Marguerite thinks of Mrs. Flower in a higher-level class not just money wise but as the only one of that upper class on their side. When she describes her skin as being rich black and where fancy dresses to her white gloves. She sees her someone who does not laugh but smiles often. Marguerite see Mrs. Flower as we today would feel if we met the president and he had smiled back at us. She thinks of her as unapproachable due to her status in life.

We can see after her getting to know Mrs. Flower she admires her and feels Mrs. Flowers likes her not as “Mrs. Henderson’s grandchild or Bailey’s sister but for just being Marguerite Johnson. While Marguerite was at Mrs. Flower home she made a connection finding some common ground in that Mrs. Flower was up to her standards in romantic novels. Mrs. Flowers reading touches Marguerite, she feels as if Mrs. Flower was signing. Thought this encounter Marguerite know looks at Mrs. Flowers as someone close to her like a friend not just as someone unfamiliar of a higher social status.

The author was conveying the message for us not to just looking on what we see on the outside but to get to know someone and see what’s on the inside. As we walk thought life saying our hello’s and goodbye’s to people we come in contract with we can learn there is a difference between having met someone and getting to know someone. We grow up from young looking at people who have more as being different and unfamiliar but when we really get to know them we can see they have at more in common with us. We can see how Marguerite getting to know Mrs. Flowers changed her and made her happy that someone had toke an interest in her.

No Matter what age we are we should never judge a book by it cover, when you open it up it can be a life changing experience. Just like Marguerite experience with Mrs. Flower got her to be more comfortable to speak, we can all learn something from each other. Whether we come from the poorest family or the riches we all have things in common and can learned from one another.

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“I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou Analysis. (2022, Jun 07). Retrieved from

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