“A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song” ~ Maya Angelou
You can not talk about contemporary literature without talking about Maya Angelou. As a young avid reader, she was one of the first African American woman writers I studied. Phenomenal Woman was the first poem I felt. Still I Rise is…timeless. You can not even pretend to be a writer and not think of Dr. Angelou. Born Marguerite Johnson, on April 4th, 1928 in St. Louis Arkansas, this phenomenal woman is a poet, novelist, educator, actress, historian, and civil rights activist. She has written numerous books including I Know Why the Caged Birds Sing, which was nominated for the National Book Award, and Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water ‘Fore I Diiie, which was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. She played a part in the civil rights movement as the northern coordinator for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference at the request of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. She was also the first black woman director and has produced and starred in numerous productions.
“Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the hope and the dream of the slave. I rise, I rise, I rise.” ~ Maya Angelou