Angelou at first made a decision to create the autobiography because very few had been published for young African American girls in America. She aimed to show to her fellow people that in spite of the hindrances and the miseries they suffered, there was an overflowing wit and love to be felt and experienced in the African American society (Elliot 1989). Certainly, the narrative has a quite definite importance for young African American girls. This essay will attempt to provide an account of the importance of Maya Angelou’s highly celebrated autobiography.
Oprah Winfrey, in her interview with Angelou in 1993, explained how significant the story was to her because she was able to see her own experience in the narrative (Megna-Wallace 1998). However, in spite of her novel objectives, Angelou discovered that when she started writing the narrative her audience and thoughts transformed (Megna-Wallace 1998): “I saw it was not just for black girls but for young Jewish boys and old Chinese women” (p. xii). The fame of the autobiography survives not merely because it keeps on being instructive on subjects of gender and race, but also due to its complete story of survival.
This importance of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings deals with the general and specific components of the autobiography of Angelou. It starts with an emphasis on the literary components of the narrative: its main themes, setting, plot, genre, perspective, and others. This literary importance sketches the journey of Angelou from a timid, anxious, and lonely girl to an adolescent who endures countless frustrations and pains and becomes known as a self-sufficient and confident young woman. The importance of the narrative involves particular topics raised by the story and the specific historical event it depicts. An importance such as this presupposes that a literary piece like I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings is a vibrant tale of not only a single