Illustration of the silhouetted profile of a person's face and three birds next to an orange sun

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

Start Free Trial

Why is "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" a Classic?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

"I know why the caged bird sings" is a classic because it highlights not only the themes and problems of the time that it was written, but its themes remain vaild. Themes such as education (Marguerite is able to provide herself a better life because of it), prejudice and Tolerance (Marguerite fights the establishment, the caste system of the South) and coming of age (Angelou beautifully describes the painful steps Marguerite goes through as she ages)make a novel that is as valid and prevailing today, as it was when written in 1970. It is for that reason, that "i know why the caged bird sings" is a classic. It is also a classic because through this novel, Maya Angelou gave a voice to those voices which were rarely heard.

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team