Still I Rise

Topics: Maya Angelou, African-American Civil Rights Movement, Southern Christian Leadership Conference Pages: 5 (1699 words) Published: February 27, 2011
“Still I Rise” Poem Analysis
“Still I Rise” was written by Maya Angelou, who is an African-American poet. A majority of her poems are written on slavery and life as a African- American woman. “Still I Rise” is one of the many well known. She discusses how she is treated differently and refers to her ancestry and relates to events they went through during the time of slavery and the events she continues to go through during her time period of life.

“This poem has been an inspiration to people from all different walks of life.” “Still I Rise” is an amazing poem that not only speaks of the troubles of slavery and Maya's struggles in life but I think this poem is also a victory call a banner of hope and encouragement to all those that have faced trails and tribulations in their lives. “Still I Rise” has many different meanings to many different people but one common message stands tall and that is no matter what struggle you face in life you have the ability to rise above it. Maya's poem reflects a lot on human nature and the inner strength we all have to fight back against whatever life throws at us”(elite skills). A majority of the people who have read “Still I Rise” seem to all come to the same conclusion as to what Maya Angelou’s point is that she is trying to make to her readers. She tells her readers that they need to have courage to stand up and not let other people push you around or break your spirit based off their judgments and criticism they may express openly.

Maya Angelou experienced the time of Martin Luther King Jr.. When African-Americans could not drink from the same water fountain as the whites, they could not attend the same schools as the whites, they could not go to the same stores, restaurants, churches, public gatherings, or even sit in the same section as the whites. “Maya Angelou delivered her poem “On the Pulse of Morning” at William Jefferson Clintons inauguration as president of the United States of America in 1993.” (Maya Angelou A Glorious Celebration Gillespie, Butler and Long p.7)

In the poem “Still I Rise” Maya Angelou uses similes and metaphors through out the poem. She compares her self to rising dust in line four, to the moon and the sun pulling at the tides in lines nine and ten , to high hopes in line eleven, the air in line twenty-four, and also to the ocean in line thirty-three.

In the first stanza Maya Angelou talks about being put into history but what is being written is bitter and turned around an falsely transferred onto paper. The whole point of the historian writing down these event its to be hateful and beat down his or her subject they are writing about. Maya Angelou states “ [y]ou may trod me in the very dirt but still like dust, I’ll rise.” (lines 3and 4) letting the historian know that they may write down hateful lies about her race and where she has come from, still she will continue to flourish.

When Maya Angelou writes “ [d]oes my sassiness upset you” she is showing that her attitude portrays that she has confidence. She holds herself with pride. Disappointing those around her that are trying to over come her and tear her spirit down. They want to see her shake with fear and not have the courage to show her true self as a person out in the public where she would be looked at as an out cast. Maya Angelou gives the image of the people who look down on her and her race being troubled when they see her walk around as if she has wealth and is someone of importance, someone they would accept into their society. She gives you the image of her pride through the way she describes her walk. When reading this part in the poem one might picture a plump women wearing all white showing off her wealth through the bold confident stride in her walk. With her nose in the air acting as if she doesn’t have the time to care what peoples thoughts are on her.

Maya Angelou chooses to compare herself to the tide being pulled in by the moons gravity closer and closer to...
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