”I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou Argumentative
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In the book, I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings, by Maya Angelou, she shows rather than tells. She allows the reader to develop a mental picture of everything she explains. The descriptions of the characters are vivid and captivate the reader’s imagination. Certain situations are explained perfectly by Maya Angelou, such as Momma’s discussion with Mrs. Flowers. Because of such articulate descriptions, the reader is pulled into the story as if they were actually there. This makes reading Caged Bird more interesting.
Maya Angelou describes how she sees Bailey as more elegant and graceful than herself. “When I was described by our playmates as being shit color, he was lauded for his velvet-black skin…And yet he loved me.” (Maya Angelou, 17). When elders made remarks about her features, they didn’t try to hide the fact that they thought she was ugly. Although she didn’t see herself as comely, Bailey always seemed to make her feel better. Another person who wasn’t partial to Maya because of her looks was Mrs. Flowers. She treated Margerite as if she were an old friend rather than putting her down.
Maya Angelou gives good visuals by showing and not telling. For instance, the way she describes Mr. Freeman as being flabby and sluggish. Although she describes him in a negative way, the description is still interesting. Even more vile than his personality were his actions. At first she didn’t mind because she felt loved, “I didn’t want to admit that I had in fact liked this, his holding me” (65, Angelou). However, after she realized how wrong it was she broke her silence, to Bailey. By presenting him as a pedophile, she makes the reader want to hate him as much as she does.
Maya Angelou describes her thoughts after her rape so perfectly, it seems as if it had only just happened. She makes the reader feel exactly what she was feeling, because she talks about her emotions with such great intricacy. The feelings and naïve thoughts of an eight-year-old are hard to remember and even harder to describe, but Maya Angelou does it with such pride “He can’t kill me, I won’t let him.”…”And of course I believed him” (69, Angelou). She isn’t at all afraid to tell the world what she was going through.
Since Maya Angelou illustrates her young life so vividly, it is extremely easy for the reader to get lost in the pages. Many may want to keep reading for as long as the can, and can’t be blamed for that; even the most easily bored people will agree if they have read the book. The reader can sympathize with Maya Angelou, even if they have never experienced such a situation. She describes things to a tee, making sure her point is across to everyone, and that’s why she is such a successful and proclaimed author.