I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

Non-Fiction, Biography & Memoir, Literary Biography & Memoir
Paperback Published on: 26/01/1984
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Bookseller Reviews

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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
The first - and arguably the best - in Maya Angelous' series of autobiographies. Her story is heartbreaking and uplifting all at once. From her childhood a... READ MORE
Jackie Carreira at Bury St Edmunds


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 The first and best-known of Maya Angelou's extraordinary seven volumes of autobiography is a testament to the talents and resilience of this extraordinary writer. Loving the world, she also knows its cruelty. As a Black woman she has known discrimination and extreme poverty, but also hope, joy, achievement and celebration. In I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Maya Angelou beautifully evokes her childhood with her grandmother in the American south of the 1930s. She learns the power of the white folks at the other end of town and suffers the terrible trauma of rape by her mother's lover. Reviewing the book in 1970, The Washington Post commented, ‘There isn’t any easy, which is to say false line in the book. The distance, which is everything, is as true as a plumb line. She is outside and inside at the same time, looking at all of it with double vision.’

  • Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
  • ISBN: 9780860685111
  • Number of pages: 320
  • Weight: 252g
  • Dimensions: 196 x 128 x 26 mm

Customer Reviews

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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
A painful honest memoir
Whilst I have a wide range of reading tastes, this is one that I would not normally consider. It is an autobiography of Maya, a black girl growing up in th... READ MORE
Half Man Half Book
I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
It will touch people for many years to come
Prior to reading this book, I had heard of Maya Angelou, but had no real knowledge of her. Raised in rural Arkansas by her grandparents, the young Margueri... READ MORE