I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
In this, the first volume of her autobiography, writer and poet Maya Angelou reflects on her childhood spent growing up in the American South of the 1930s. There she learned the power of the white townsfolk and suffered the trauma of rape.
The international classic and bestseller, Maya Angelou’s memoir paints a portrait of ‘a brilliant writer, a fierce friend and a truly phenomenal woman’ (BARACK OBAMA).
‘I write about being a Black American woman, however, I am always talking about what it’s like to be a human being. This is how we are, what makes us laugh, and this is how we fall and how we somehow, amazingly, stand up again’ Maya Angelou
In this first volume of her seven books of autobiography, Maya Angelou beautifully evokes her childhood with her grandmother in the American south of the 1930s. Loving the world, she also knows its cruelty. As a Black woman she has known discrimination, violence and extreme poverty, but also hope, joy, achievement and celebration.
‘I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings liberates the reader into life simply because Maya Angelou confronts her own life with such a moving wonder, such a luminous dignity’ JAMES BALDWIN
‘She moved through the world with unshakeable calm, confidence and a fierce grace . . . She will always be the rainbow in my clouds’ OPRAH WINFREY
‘She was important in so many ways. She launched African American women writing in the United States. She was generous to a fault. She had nineteen talents – used ten. And was a real original. There is no duplicate’ TONI MORRISON