Summary Of I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings By Maya Angelou

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Register to read the introduction… “Angelou becomes a voluntary mute and lives in a world of silence for nearly five years” (Hanford). That 5 years of silence comes to an end when Maya meets Mrs.Flowers. Mrs.Flowers introduces poetry to Maya, poetry catches Maya’s attention and she instantly falls in love with how powerful the words sound and how they flow together. “‘How do you like that?’ It occurred to me that she expected a response. The sweet vanilla flavor was still on my tongue and her reading was a wonder in my ears. I had to speak. I said ‘yes ma’ma.’ It was the least I could do, but it was also the most” (Angelou 100). On that day at Mrs.Flowers house, Maya Angelou finally speaks to someone who was an adult instead of her older brother. As time goes on “Mrs. Flowers helps Maya to begin to have some self-confidence” (Walker) Her confidence is strong until her grandmother takes her to the only dentist in Stamps, Dentist Lincoln. Dentist Lincoln was a white man who does not take African American patients. however he owed Maya’s grandmother a favor and she thought Lincoln would heal Maya’s toothache, but Maya’s grandmother was wrong. “The three of us were crowded on the small landing ‘Annie my policy is I would rather stick my hands in a dog’s mouth than a nigger’s’” (Angelou 189). Although Maya encounters other racist comments from white men and women before which is a big eye opener and she starts to realize how cruel the world really is. As Maya continues grow and change Mrs. Flowers helps Maya gain confidence and she begins to talk again Dentist Lincoln, however, shows Maya the cruelness of the 1930’s. Sadly that’s not end of Maya’s …show more content…
“Maya Angelou.” Ed. Lauren Curtright. University of Minnesota. U of Minnesota, n.d. Web. 3 Dec. 2012. <>.

Franks, Carol. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. New Jersey: Salem, 1993. Literary Reference Center. Web. 8 Apr. 2014. <>.

Hanford, Mary. Maya Angelou. New Jersey: Salem, 2006. Literary Reference Center. Web. 8 Apr. 2014. <>.

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. New York: Maya Angelou, 2009. Print.

Walker, Pierre A. Racial protest, identity, words, and form in Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. Vol. 22. West Chester: Collage Literature, n.d. Literary Reference Center. Web. 8 Apr. 2014.

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