Monday, February 22, 2010

Black Histroy Month Spotlight

Maya Angelou, born Marguerite Ann Johnson on April 4, 1928, is an American autobiographer and poet. She is well-known for her series of six autobiographical volumes, which focus on her childhood and early adulthood experiences. The first, best-known, and most highly acclaimed, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969), focuses on the first seventeen years of her life.

Fun Fact: Angelou received the nickname Maya, which is shortened from "my-a-sister", from her older brother Bailey.

Two of my favorite excerpts from I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings are:

"If growing up is painful for the Southern Black girl, being aware of her displacement is the rust on the razor that threatens the throat."

"The Black female is assaulted in her tender years by all those common forces of nature at the same time that she is caught in the tripartite crossfire of masculine prejudice, white illogical hate and Black lack of power.
The fact that the adult American Negro female emerges a formidable character is often met with amazement, distaste and even belligerence. It is seldom accepted as an inevitable outcome of the struggle won by survivors and deserves respect if not enthusiastic acceptance."

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