Maya Angleou

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Marguerite Annie Johnson was Maya Angelou’s name at birth. She was born on April 4, 1928 in St. Louis, Missouri. Angelou started going by Maya because her little brother could not pronounce Marguerite, so he would call her “My-a sister” which later turned to Maya. Maya Angleou was the daughter of “her mother Vivian Baxter who was a nurse and part time she worked as card dealer in a casino, her father named Bailey Johnson he was a doorman at an apartment building. Then she had an older brother named Bailey Jr. that was one-years old.” Growing up Maya did not have an easy-going childhood. Her parents got a divorce when she was three years old and sent her and brother Bailey, Jr. to live with their grandmother in Stamps, Arkansas. While staying…show more content…
The marriage did not last that long. It ended in 1954 and then she danced professionally at Purple Onion as a calypso dancer. This is where Maya Angelou got her last name, she kept her last name from her ex-husband. During her time working she met a novelist named John Oliver Killens. In 1959 he helped Angelou publish her book and she was able to get involved in Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC). She travelled to Ghana and met a man named Guy. In Accra, she met Malcolm X and became close friends with him. Angelou participated in civil rights organizations like the Organization of Afro-American Unity. After that in 1968 Martin Luther King, Jr. asked Maya Angelou to organize a march. Maya Angleou wrote an autobiography called I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1970). Based on the article by Paula Stewart Brush stated, “offer their descriptions of experience, race does not appear as more significant; race is not prioritized over gender”. In the autobiography by Angleou she talks about her life and the abusive she experienced from Mr. Freeman. Angleou’s young protagonist is personal or universal, or on race, gender, identity, displacement, or a combination of these.
The civil rights movement is the main motivation for her entire poem called “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings”. By the 1970s Toni Cade’s the Black Woman: An Anthology (2005) featured many other black women in public to use their literary voice. In
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. New York: Random House, 1980.

Secondary Sources:
Angelou, Maya, “Still I Rise” Poetry Foundation, 2018.
"A Quote by Maya Angelou." Quote by Maya Angelou: "I've Learned That People Will Forget What You S..." Accessed March 20, 2018.
Brush, Paula Steward., The Influence of Social Movements on Articulations of Race and Gender in Black Women’s Autobiographies, Western Michigan University, 1999.
Johnson, Nancy B., and Tonette Bond Inge. "Southern Women Writers: The New Generation." South Atlantic Review56, no. 1 (1991): 147. doi:10.2307/3200169.
Labrecque, Ellen, Who Was Maya Angelou?, Penguin Workshop, 2016.
Neubauer, Carol, Maya Angelou: Self and a Song of Freedom in the Southern Tradition, Southern Women Writers: The New Generation. Ed. Tonette Bond Inge. The University of Alabama Press, 1990, 2.
Roberts, Alex. Maya Angelou. North Charleston, SC: CreateSpace Independent, 2017
Walker, Pierre., Racial Protest, Identity, Words, and Form in Maya Angelou’s I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, The John Hopkins University Press.
Williams, Rhonda. Black Women and Black Power, Oxford University Press,
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