Maya Angelou was a tough artist to dismiss. Her imaginative and poetic services to the world were exceptional. She piqued my curiosity after receiving the Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama in 2011. (Biography.com). What really drew me to her were her many contributions to the arts as a poet, novelist, historian, dancer, musician, lecturer, educator, producer, actor, songwriter, playwright, and journalist. Maya piqued my curiosity more than other artists because of her unwavering support of African American culture, not just in her literary works and shows, but also in her daily life. This is since the impacts of most artists on the living are often felt after the artists’ demise (Biography.com). However, Maya Angelou engaged with her audience before and after her death. Even before the artist became famous, she was still engaged in her cause of promoting African American heritage as was the case when she, at Martin Luther King’s request, coordinated the Southern Christian Leadership Conference.
In particular, her book, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was of special appeal to me. In the book, Maya describes her childhood down south in segregated Arkansas. Specifically, she describes the distorted self-image that she had derived from the incessantly racist region. Moreover, the author narrates how she and her brother faired after the death of their father and the harsh realities of physical and cultural displacement that led them to live with their grandmother (Angelou 39). After moving again to St Louis to live with her mother, the author recounts the unfortunate sexual molestation that she suffered at the hands of her stepfather. However, even with the traumatic nature of her childhood, the author came to redefine herself as a strong African American woman. Therefore, the idea of embracing the positive in the face of adversity, as the author did, will always stay with me.
The Works Cited page in every paper is an important facet of research. Writers use the page for a variety of reasons. First, the page helps build a writer’s credibility by showing that he or she performed extensive research on the topic. This is crucial as it also enhances the reputation of the writer among his or her peers (McMillan and Schumacher 12). Moreover, blind reviews of a writer’s work may simply consider the merit of the cited sources. The other reason for the page is that it is important for fact-checking. This is primarily because accuracy is a crucial factor in almost all writing forms. By citing the work, writers give the reader a chance to confirm that the attribution to the quoted text or paraphrased passage is indeed as the former author willed it to be. Moreover, it can introduce the reader to a broader take on the issue in the discussion for further comprehension. Writers also use the works cited page to improve their research skills. This is so since it involved the payment of attention to details. Moreover, since research involves the discernment of patterns and the making of connections inherent in research sources, citing the works provides writers an efficient avenue for practicing this art by ensuring that connections are made between their work and their sources. In addition to that, the constant citing of works ensures that good research habits are instilled in them not only in their attribution but also in other research areas as well such as searching for the material to cite.
Angelou, Maya. I know why the caged bird sings. New York: Bantam, 1997.
Biography.com. Maya Angelou. 30 August 2017. 10 December 2017
McMillan, James H. and Sally Schumacher. Research in education: A conceptual introduction. Massachusetts: Little, Brown and Company, 1984.