Maya Angelou: A Model Woman Through Influential Literature Essay

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There are many women of today that have become a model for society. In order to have the reputation of the model woman, there is a need for accomplishment in life in addition to being a positive influence on society itself. Maya Angelou is a great example of the model woman. She has beaten the odds and has become one of the most well known African American women of today. She is an author, poet, historian, songwriter, playwright, dancer, stage and screen producer, director, performer, singer, and civil rights activist. Her most influential work comes from her extraordinary books and poems. Her literature has influenced the young and old with their contents. Maya Angelou's literary significance rests primarily upon her exceptional …show more content…
Joanne M. Braxton described her and her literature as "America's most visible black woman autobiographer. While black women writers might share traditional motivations for writing autobiography, other motives derive from their unique experiences. And yet, against all odds, she comes to self-awareness and finds herself at the center of her own experience. Maya Angelou has tempered her own anger and put it to a constructive purpose; her work specks to the necessity of reflecting, remembering, opening, healing, and, at times, issuing a warning. In I know Why the Caged Birds Sings, she focuses almost entirely on the inner spaces of her emotional and personal life, crafting a "literary" autobiography that becomes not merely a personal record but also a stage on which the sins of the past can be recalled and rituals of healing and reconciliation enacted." (Braxton, Joann, page 4) Maya Angelou has been awarded over 30 honorary degrees and was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize for her 1971 volume of poetry, Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water 'Fore I Diiie. Again, the theme of this volume of poetry focuses on Angelou's perspective on what it means to be a black woman in the United States, but also address experiences common to all people. The book has two parts, "Where Love is a Scream of Anguish" and "Just Before the World Ends." The first