pg. 8 Chap. 1:
"The sounds of the new morning had been
replaced with grumbles about cheating houses,
weighted scales, snakes, skimpy cotton and dusty
rows. In later years I was to confront the
stereotyped picture of gay song-singing cotton
pickers with such an inordinate rage that I was
told even by fellow blacks that my paranoia was
embarrassing. But I had seen the fingers cut by
the mean little cotton boils, and I had witnessed
the backs and shoulders and arm and legs
resisting any further demands."
The importance of this quote is really integral to
the rest of the book. To be able to criticize
something you should have experienced it. This
passage shows that Maya has experienced the
non-privilege of being a Negro during the thirties,
and experienced it at a young age. Maya wrote
that she later confronted the stereotype, She had a
right to because of her previous position.
pg.14 chap. 2
"Bailey and I decided to memorize a scene from
The Merchant of Venice , but realized that
Momma would question us about the author and
that we'd have to tell her that Shakespeare was
white, And it wouldn't matter to her whether or
not he was dead. So we chose 'The Creation' by
James Weldon Johnson "
This excerpt is crucial because it puts yet another
facet on segregation. Really the blacks and whites
were both afraid of each other equally. The only
difference was that the whitefolks were in a
position to act on those fears.
pg.25 chap 4.
"In Stamps the segregation was so complete that
most Black children didn't really, absolutely know
what whites looked like. Other than they were
different, to be dreaded, and in that dread was
included the hostility of the powerless against the
powerful, the poor against the rich, The worker
against the worked for, and the ragged against the
I remember never... [continues]
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(2000, 08). I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 08, 2000, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Know-Why-Caged-Bird-Sings-28161.html
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