Maya Angelou's Influence On The Power Of Literature

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I have been a reader for as long as I can remember. I remember hiding under my covers with a flashlight just to finish a good book. Literature enthralls me, and by the power that the words have on one’s imagination and emotions. Literature captivates the potential to evoke one’s imagination and inspire creativity in anyone who starts to breathe in the precious words. Maya Angelou has the perfect quote to summarize how I feel about the power of literature and reading, “When I look back, I am so impressed again with the life-giving power of literature. If I were a young person today, trying to gain a sense of myself in the world, I would do that again by reading, just as I did when I was young.” I feel literature breathes life into the words …show more content…
I learned about each author and the time period they were writing about before I read their short story and this gave me much more insight to their writing. I was able to connect more with their characters from the author’s intended point of view than just from my point of view, which gave a different perception of the story. For example, knowing the author was writing in the Naturalism period, Realism period or was a Southern writer, can make all the difference on the slant or influence the author has on his characters and his writing. Knowing the short story, “The Occurrence on Owl Creek Bridge” was written during the Civil war, during a time when Realism was popular, gave justice to the type of writing that Bierce used in his story. Furthermore, while knowing these different genres of writing, throughout the semester, I learned more characteristics that gave me insight and characteristics of the author’s point of view of their writing. Likewise, this helped breathed life into the story for me right from the start to foreshadow the tone of the story before I even started reading …show more content…
An author can force one to do that through the moral and ethical decisions they make their characters face in their stories and make one think through those decisions through their own eyes as if they were making the decisions themselves. The beauty of reading is that it is never passive. Reading always makes you an active participant whether one realizes or not. The reader’s mind is always engaged and pulled into the story by merely breathing in the words, comprehending their meaning and understanding the plot of the story. Once the reading understands the plot of the story, they get the power to turn on creativity and that is where the fun begins. They get to create the true characters, what they look like, what their true dispositions are, how they dress, how they interact. The authors lay the basics, but how they are truly manipulated, lays in our own imaginations. The magic of reading is that each reader will read the book differently and how one reads and sees the characters and the plot line will be slightly different from the other. This is amazing beauty of literature and its life-giving power. 20 different people can read a book and read it in 20 different ways. I can also read a book today and pick it up 20 years later and read the same book and it can have a totally different

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