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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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Why did Maya Angelou entitle her book, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings?    

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Maya Angelou named the book after one of her poems by the same name. The caged bird has clipped wings and tied feet. It sings of fear and sorrow, and its voice carries far away, although no one helps it escape. Meanwhile, the free bird can claim the sky as his own and explore its heights. In her autobiography, Angelou was like the caged bird. She was a black female growing up in the segregated south during the Depression. Essentially because of her race and gender, she was invisible to society. She could call for help, but no one would heed the call of an impoverished black girl.

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