Maya Angelou's the Graduation

1596 Words Apr 5th, 2009 7 Pages
Maya Angelou’s The Graduation Throughout life we go through many stepping stones, Maya Angelou's autobiographical essay "Graduation", was about more than just moving on to another grade. The unexpected events that occurred during the ceremony enabled her to graduate from the views of a child to the more experienced and sometimes disenchanting views of an adult. Upon reading the story there is an initial feeling of excitement and hope which was quickly tarnished with the awareness of human prejudices. The author vividly illustrates many mood changes she undergoes throughout the story. From the outset of the story there is an overwhelming sense of hope that has enveloped the entire community and school with the upcoming graduation. …show more content…
All her perfect practice was now gone and the strain as they "fumbled for their chairs" began to crush their pattern. The author was overcome with a "presentiment of worse things to come." Don Leavy's speech caused a fury to start boiling inside of the author due to the assumed fact that she has lost control over her future. "The accomplishment was nothing.", she has already been picked to act and assume a certain role in society. Anything they aspired for other than maids or farmers was "farcial and presumtous." Along with this fury came frustration. This frustration is like a blanket that is too short to cover you, no matter how much you stretch and pull, it never covers you whole. This is now what was consuming her mind. For the moment she had to sit there and listen to the garbage filling the room, "listen to charges brought against my color." What had been beautiful, was now ugly. She hated the human race for what it had become, a race or mass of people concreted on bias. The ceremony that had started out as a night of hope had now become an eternity of hopelessness.
Moving from a childlike bliss to an awakening of the world's prejudice, the author makes the words take on flesh. The story is made alive as she breathes life into a time that is unpleasant yet not void of hope. "The hush-hush magic time of frills and gifts and congratulations" disappeared when they were told the cold hard `truth' of their fate that some white man had already decided for them.
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