Graduation By Maya Angelou Summary

1578 Words 7 Pages
Michael Maciel
ENG 001A
Prof. Sudderth Maya Angelou’s “Graduation” is a short story describing Maya Angelou’s high school graduation from her own point of view. In this story Maya does an exceptional job in making the reader feel the same emotions that she felt during this major event in her life. The way Angelou describes her surroundings and the emotions felt during the event makes the reader feel as if they were right next to Maya watching her class graduate. Angelou sets a sense of importance when describing the graduating class, “But the graduating class themselves were the nobility. Like travelers with exotic destinations on their minds, the graduates were remarkably forgetful.” This is a great use of pathos in this short story.
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This story is a heartfelt story, much like Angelou’s “Graduation” Amy gives the reader an emotional input of an event in her life that places the reader in the mindset of Amy as a child. Amy begins the story by describing her love for language, “I am a writer. And by that definition, I am someone who has always loved language.” Amy very deeply expresses her love for language which sets the tone as well as the mood of the story. Tan begins to describe the “different Englishes” she uses. When describing this Amy uses both pathos and logos at the same time attracting the reader to the main point of the …show more content…
Tan describes the difference of English she uses when addressing the large group of people stated in the essay, intellectually was the word she used to describe the English she used when addressing the group. When addressing her mother about prices Tan used a “broken” version of English to describe the prices, “Not waste money that way”, this is a huge difference in the types of English Tan describes throughout her story. The reader is able to tell from these sentences just how much we are divided as a people when it comes to language. Amy makes a point in stating that we as a people tend to look down on a person morally and intellectually when that person is unable to speak the native language of the land they are living in. Tan not only uses language as a literary device but also in a literal sense. After stating the language barrier that occurs in a family that doesn’t use English as a primary language, she expresses her frustration on how it limited her possibilities in life. She says, “Sociologists and linguists probably will tell you that a person’s developing language skills are more influenced by peers. But I do think that the language spoken in the family, especially in immigrant families which are more insular, plays a larger role in shaping the language of the

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