Maya Angelou

Sample essay topic, essay writing: Maya Angelou - 621 words

Maya Angelou has dedicated her life to endprejudices faced by many black females in the 20th century. As an author, poet, and entertainer, she is known best forher strong portrayal of African-American women. Some ofher most outstanding work is the series of autobiographiesthat she wrote telling about her childhood. Her work hascontributed immensely to Americans everywhere. She hasalso broken many barriers for black women in writing, entertainment, and in film making. Maya Angelou is definitelya positive role model to people everywhere.

Maya Angelouhas made many contributions through her poetry, writing, songwriting, acting, and film directing. She has written aseries of autobiographical books focusing on her childhooduntil the birth of her own child, ten of which have appearedon the best selling list ("Biography" 1). The most prestigiousof the novels is I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. This is avery controversial novel dealing with many serious issuesincluding rape and murder. It is her most critically acclaimedwork and was nominated for the National Book Award("Maya American" 1)

She often writes using a female as thestrong role model. In addition, she has published manydistinguished poems which have received recognition bymany people including President Clinton. Her poem "On thePulse of Morning" was chosen by President Clinton to beread at the 1993 presidential inauguration. Many of hervolumes of poetry have been nominated for the Pulitzer Prizeincluding Shaker, Why Don't You Sing?, And Still I Rise, and Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water 'fore I Die ("MayaAmerican" 2). In addition to writing, she has had success inother categories of entertainment.

Her screenplay Georgia, Georgia was produced in 1971, and she wrote andproduced a prize winning documentary "Afro-Americans inthe Arts" which received a Golden Eagle award("Biography" 1) ("Maya Angelou" 1). Her musicalcompositions have been recorded by many famous peopleincluding B. B. King ("Biography" 1). Likewise, she wasnominated for an Emmy Award for her role in the hit movieRoots ("Biography" 1). Many distinguished Americans havechosen her to serve on commissions and attend veryimportant conferences. Martian Luther King, Jr., requestedher as the northern coordinator for the Southern ChristianLeadership Conference; Gerald Ford appointed her to theBicentennial Commission, and Jimmy Carter named her tothe National Commission on the Observance of InternationalWomen's Year ("Maya Angelou" 1). Maya Angelou hasmade an enormous contribution to not only the blacksociety, but to everyone in the 1900's.

Maya Angelou'swork has broken many barriers for the black writers, entertainers, and directors. She has been a woman of firstsamong the African American women. Angelou was theground breaker for many black women in script writing anddirecting. In 1971, she became the first black woman tohave an original screenplay produced ("Biography" 1). Shewas not only the first African-American, but also the firstwoman to read her work at a presidential inauguration("Maya American" 2).

In her series of autobiographicalbooks, she describes the racist and sexual pressures put onblack women during the time when she was a young girl. This helped people become aware of what was going onduring this time period. In addition to all of this, she was alsoSan Francisco's first black woman conductor ("Biography"1). Ms. Angelou now spends her time informing others abouther knowledge of prejudices, and teaches students to standup for their rights. She is a professor of American Studies atWake Forest University in North Carolina ("Biography" 1).She also educates about courage, perseverance, self-acceptance, and self-actualization. Maya Angelou helpsAfrican-American women to speak out against prejudicesand is definitely a role model to many young black women. In conclusion, Maya Angelou is a remarkable person, andshe has made a tremendous contribution to all Americansthrough her writing, screenwriting, and songwriting.

Herautobiographies help readers to visualize all of the hardshipsMaya Angelou faced and overcame while growing up. Shehelps black women to realize they do not have to bedefeated by prejudices, and is an identity for young womenof all races to relate to.

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