I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings Essay

1713 Words Mar 24th, 2016 7 Pages
Ossie Davis says, “I find, in being black, a thing of beauty: a joy; a strength; a secret cup of gladness”1. African Americans have a different perspective about living in society. They are ostracized because of their color, and often have less freedom than that a white person. Maya Angelou, author of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, addresses the problems of African Americans in her autobiography. Cudjoe believes that, “The world to which Angelou introduces us is embroidered with humiliation, violation, displacement, and loss” (27)2. She uses examples such as: racism, segregation, African American women, beauty, and growing up as an African American, to prove her theme of being an African American. Many African Americans have to struggle with racism. They are treated differently by whites and have less opportunities, mainly because of their skin color. Since whites have better opportunities to become successful, Maurgerite, the main character, known as Maya, and author of the novel says, “The white kids were going to have a chance to become Galileos and Madame Curies and Edisons and Gauguins, and our boys (the girls weren’t even in on it) would try to be Jesse Owenses and Joe Louises” (176)3. Many societies view African Americans as pariahs. Critic Selwyn Cudjoe believes that, “… any discussion on the Afro-American autobiography is always likely to raise this question: “Is it really true” ” (26)4. As African American authors re-tell their experiences, through…

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