Books and Movies Reviews

I Know Why the Cage Bird Sings

"I Know Why the Cage Bird Sings' by Maya Angelou, is a story based on a young, black, moderately poor girl named Marguerite'Maya' Johnson and the ordeals she experiences as she grows. The story holds strong emotional issues of ones self-esteem, ignorance and character strength.
As we know Maya viewed and many times dealt with difficult situations throughout her early years. She understands that the only way for black people to remain strong and dignified in the face of racism is to respond with dignity to attacks. For example, when the white woman yells at the black war veteran, he does not yell back, he simply and quietly points out to her that she is wrong. “Then ask your son to look around for my arm, which I left over there.” I found this quote comical because it shows the man avoiding another demeaning argument of racism, while at the same time telling the woman she is foolish.
Ignorance was also a great factor of the story. For example, Maya, like most black people in Stamps, knows almost nothing about white people, “I remember never believing that whites were really real." they are too different from her. She merely saw them as creatures. I feel this is just another example of how racism is based on ignorance. Both parties or guilty of hate, hate brewed on ignorance and lack of interest of neighboring cultures. Hate, that has literally been passed down from generation to generation with a'just cause' attitude.
In contrast, Maya has an experience that would build self-esteemand change her outlook on the interaction between people. In the junkyard, Maya learns to take care of herself, and she begins to understand that people of all races, and all personality types, can be friends. The kids accept her without questioning her. This helps her to feel less alone because of her own race, and makes her feel like a normal human being, rather than an unwanted, ugly black girl who doesn’t be


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