Who is Maya Angelou? Maya Angelou was primarily a very versatile and talented person. This woman of African American origin wrote and published seven autobiographies that were very popular and highly-evaluated in the US. However, she is well-known not only for being an author but also for being an actress, poet, dancer, and screenwriter. And of course we must not forget activism in the field of civil rights conducted by Maya.
Resistance to oppression is a fluid theme throughout these two works of literature, Angelou in Still I rise, An ode to the power that brews in us all to overcome our most difficult circumstances, and is truly an inspiration to all homestayers in the sixties no matter Their race. “She speaks not only for herself but also for her gender and race. This extension of self occurs in Angelou's autobiographies and protest poetry” (Hagen 118). Her status as being a powerful black woman in the house, portrays her self confidence to override anything that puts her down as she will always exceed to rise up. While on the other hand Susan Rawlings in To Room Nineteen saw suicide as her only outlet to her lack of freedom in her marriage.
The greatest criticism has arisen due to the uncharacteristically pious personality of Tom and Eva St. Clare. Yet most critics recognize Stowe's original intention, to put an end to slavery in the United States, and therefore do not overly support any notion that Stowe's work should be considered less valuable. In her own critique of common criticism against the novel, author Veronica Margrave dismisses such opinions, stating, "One sees clearly that both are meant to be allegorical characters, and Stowe has cleverly crafted them as such" (1). Another criticism of some historians and readers is the novel's use of racial stereotypes and a patronizing attitude towards blacks, such as Tom's subservient nature, especially when he promises to remain with St. Clare even if freed. However, again Margrave counters that Tom is "a Christian man who saw another in need, and chose to be a situational martyr, choosing another over himself" (5).
A young Billie Holiday was sent to live with her cousin and great grandmother. Her great-grandmother had been a slave, and she would ‘converse with the young girl for hours about plantation life and how it felt to be owned “body and soul by a white man”’ (King 1990, pg. 23). These early experiences of racial troubles not only shaped Holiday’s understanding of racial conflict, but formed the roots of her music which would later reflect the themes of social injustice and racism. The stunningly emotive tone which she possessed allowed the listener to feel the emotions being sung for themselves, which made Holiday truly special, and perhaps the most pivotal moment in her career using this emotive quality in her voice to inspire pain in others was the song ‘Strange Fruit’, which she recorded in 1939.
Women’s Writings Sir, Waseem Hassan Malik October 25, 2015 Black Feminism in The Color Purple Novel by Alice Walker Abstract The aim and object of this paper is to study Black Feminism in the Novel Color Purple by Alice Walker. Afro-American Literature Started in the beginning of twentieth century to give voice to the Black Women who are victim of racism, sexism and verbal abuse. There are renowned writers like Alice Walker, Toni Morison, Walter Mosely who Sternly advocated the rights of African women through their exemplary writings. African women is true model of strength and immense courage. She defines her identify with help of each other.
Ex slaves, penned their personal experiences of slavery and contributed to the creation of a new literary genre namely the slave narrative. The importance of slave narratives in modern African American literature is such that the latter could not be understood without an analysis of the literature written by ex slaves. Slave narratives played an important role in the genesis of Afro American literature. As seen in any other genre, in slave narratives too there can be seen some differences between slave narratives written by men and slave narratives written by women. In the case of bondwomen they lived through two-fold submission.
Having done so, she goes on to highlight the ‘womanist’ culture. Afro-American tradition, for Mama, is symbolized by churn. It is a tradition of bonding, of mutual nurturance. Similarly, the symbol of quilt for Mama is not just a utilitarian item but a living tradition. Alice Walker, in fact, uses the imagery of the quilt to suggest what womanism is all about.
Alice walker created the splash in the literary world because of his womanist concept in her epistolary novel The Color Purple in 1982. She won the Pulitzer Prize for her fiction in 1982. And she was the first black woman to won this prize. Many women writers during 1970’s and 80’s like Toni Morrison, Gloria Naylor, Toni Code Bambara, Walker, Joyce Carol Thomas, Audre Lordes and Paul Marshal talk about how black women’s lives were affected by sexism and racism. Their writings were like bulwarks against social taboos.
To a large extent, the essay by Alice Walker refers to the poetry of Jean Toomer citing and in some way rephrasing his works. This poet noticed the uniqueness of the black women in terms of their immense and intense spirituality regardless of what their bodies endured. According to him, those women were Saints. Thus, Walker proves that without any doubt, African American women belong to this type of people. Following Toomer 's observations, the article 's author emphasizes how complicated it was to be a mother, a grandmother, or simply a woman at that time because they were oppressed and discriminated due to the color of their skin and the historical experience of slavery.
Toni Morrison’s creative rigour, her intellectual and critical depth and her prophetic vision of the role of literature in interpreting the African American experience in the United States are unsurpassed. With her androgynous literary voice she narrates the dark truths about black life. The anthropologist in her formatted her creative writings in a progressive sequence depicting the complexity of black life in multicolors. Black people are aggressive, innovative and creative, said Morrison in one of her interviews. Carrying the same legacy she is explorative and sometimes even radical in her characterization and thus, emerged her atypical women characters.