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Maya Angelou Still I Rise. You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may trod me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I'll.

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Presentation on theme: "Maya Angelou Still I Rise. You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may trod me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I'll."— Presentation transcript:

1 Maya Angelou Still I Rise

2 You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may trod me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I'll rise. Does my sassiness upset you? Why are you beset with gloom? 'Cause I walk like I've got oil wells Pumping in my living room. Just like moons and like suns, With the certainty of tides, Just like hopes springing high, Still I'll rise. Did you want to see me broken? Bowed head and lowered eyes? Shoulders falling down like teardrops. Weakened by my soulful cries. Does my haughtiness offend you? Don't you take it awful hard 'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines Diggin' in my own back yard. You may shoot me with your words, You may cut me with your eyes, You may kill me with your hatefulness, But still, like air, I'll rise. Does my sexiness upset you? Does it come as a surprise That I dance like I've got diamonds At the meeting of my thighs? Out of the huts of history's shame I rise Up from a past that's rooted in pain I rise I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear I rise Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise I rise I rise.

3 Maya Angelou: Youth California Age 3: Parents’ Divorce Shuffled in different homes Racism and Poor treatment from men Age 7: raped by mother’s boyfriend Boyfriend gets arrested and murdered Turned mute for more than 5 years, thinking her voice killed him Age 17: child of wedlock Was divorced 3 times

4 Maya Angelou: Career Thought her career options were limited Tried drugs Acted as prostitute Family encouraged her to try different jobs 1950s: started career as singer Wrote song lyrics and poems End of 1950s: developed skills as writer Published nationally praised verses and autobiographical narratives Currently an author, poet, playwright, director, performer, singer, professional stage/screen producer

5 Maya Angelou: Still I Rise Reflecting on the poor treatment her race received as slaves (and discriminated even after freedom) Active in Civil Rights Movement Joined Harlem Writers’ Guild Helped build Organization of African American Unity Involved herself in TV productions Worked for Dr. Martin Luther King & made protests

6 The Harlem Writers Guild Founded in 1950 Oldest organization of African American writers in the United States Purpose: supporting African American writers to publish their work (books, journals, etc.) Honored by United Nations (UN) Society of Writers

7 OAAU Abbrev. of Organization of African-American Unity First established by Malcom X, an African American Muslim minister, who was a public speaker and a civil rights activist (used very harsh, direct words to white ppl) Designed to promote cooperation between African Americans To speak out against slavery and unjust oppression “conquer oppression, relieve suffering, convert meaningless struggle into meaningful action” Expired soon after Malcom X’s assassination Assassination occurred while he was making a speech for the OAAU, received 16 consecutive shots

8 Repetition You may write me down in history With your bitter, twisted lies, You may trod me in the very dirt But still, like dust, I’ll rise. Just like moons and like suns, With the certainty of tides, Just like hopes springing high, Still I’ll rise. You may shoot me with your words, You may cut me with your eyes, You may kill me with your hatefulness, But still, like air, I’ll rise. Out of the huts of history’s shame I rise Up from a past that’s rooted in pain I rise I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear, I rise Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear I rise Bring the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and hope of the slave I rise I rise.

9 Why Repetition? The meaning of “I Rise” She will not lose hope and stand up, to fight against the discrimination and to speak up She will begin a new page of history for the black race, where they are equal with all other races For emphasis: that she will not surrender and support her race stand up Showing strength and persistence of her race (as she is the representative of black women in this poem) Because it is the main message the poet wants to send

10 Inverted Word Order Does my haughtiness offend you? Don’t you take it awful hard ‘Cause I laugh like I’ve got gold mines Diggin’ in my own back yard.

11 Inverted Word Order The three most common usages of inverted word order are in interrogative sentences, conditional sentences (without if), and declarative sentences that begin with a negative word. The phrase in this poem, however, cannot be distinctly specified in one of the group. It sounds like an interrogative sentence in the beginning with a “Don’t you,” but it ends with something like an imperative-like sentence. It is also similar to a declarative sentence in the fact that it starts with a negative word.

12 Why Inverted Word Order? In this poem, the phrase “Don’t you” is used to: Show overpower: usually, bullies or older brothers tell younger kids “Don’t you dare touch this,” or “Don’t you tell Mom about this,” because the two words create a feeling of threat and power. Comical device (as a way to make fun): along with the “Don’t you,” the poet adds the phrase “take it awful hard.” This creates a tone that is comical and belittling, as if a bully would tell a kid “Don’t you cry, sissy.” In short, the poet is implying that she (and the other mistreated ones) is of higher level than the “masters,” although it may seem like the black women are of a lower class.

13 Simile Does my haughtiness offend you? Don't you take it awful hard 'Cause I laugh like I've got gold mines Diggin' in my own back yard.

14 Why Simile? The main reason Maya Angelou made use of similes in this poem was to express her feelings in a more vivid, comparable way. It is often easier to relate to one’s feelings with something that is already existing, so that others can picture the scene in their heads without much difficulty. Dust and Air: used to describe the way in which the speaker “rises.” Dust and air are both invalid and difficult to see. By using these two words to compare a single action, the poet allows readers to think of a quiet, subtle rise, yet continuous.

15 Simile Patterns “Just like moons and like suns, Just like hopes springing high…”: These three words are used to describe how regular, natural, and full-of-spirit her “rise” is. The sun and the moon are both things that mark the start of day or night. Therefore, it could also be interpreted that the speaker wishes to mark the beginning of a new page in the black history (and promote black and white equality).

16 Simile Patterns “Like I’ve Got” This phrase is repeated (this method overlaps with repetition) to accentuate the fact that the speaker has a source of confidence in her heart. As comparisons, she uses oil wells, gold mines, and diamonds, which are all known to be valuable and desirable.

17 Metaphor Out of the huts of history’s shame / I rise Up from a past that’s rooted in pain / I rise I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear / I rise Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear / I rise Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise / I rise / I rise.

18 Metaphor Meanings I’m a black ocean: This metaphor is used to show that the speaker is a black person, one who has so much resentment and grudge in herself, that she can be wild waves attacking the shores. Shows that her words represent many others who have suffered like her (ocean being something vast) “Black” has a connotation of being gloomy and depressing, which is another reason why the speaker used the adjective.

19 Metaphor Meanings I am the dream and hope of the slave. Indicates that the speaker is representing the African- American (Perhaps even other races) slave population. The speaker is being directly addressed as dream and hope. Dream and hope are both more of futuristic words than of present or past. Therefore, this comparison implies that the speaker will contribute to the bright future of the slaves and will not fall down despite any mistreatment. It also suggests the speaker’s confidence and strong will, because the tone in which this is said is very declarative.

20 Rhyme Scheme You may shoot me with your words, You may cut me with your eyes, You may kill me with your hatefulness, But still, like air, I'll rise. Does my sexiness upset you? Does it come as a surprise That I dance like I've got diamonds At the meeting of my thighs? Out of the huts of history's shame I rise Up from a past that's rooted in pain I rise I'm a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear I rise Into a daybreak that's wondrously clear I rise Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise I rise.

21 Effect of Rhyme Scheme The rhyme scheme in this poem is abcb, until the last stanza, where the pattern is a little varied. By having a rhyme scheme, the poem is more rhythmical and melodic. The transition is smoother, and it is easier to read. Poet’s purpose: The poem being conversational and comfortably-spoken, the poet needed a way to prevent I from being too free-style. Therefore, to create some order and pattern, she used the rhyme scheme.

22 Consonance Out of the huts of history’s shame / I rise Up from a past that’s rooted in pain / I rise I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide, Welling and swelling I bear in the tide. Leaving behind nights of terror and fear / I rise Into a daybreak that’s wondrously clear / I rise Bringing the gifts that my ancestors gave, I am the dream and the hope of the slave. I rise / I rise / I rise.

23 Why Consonance? Consonance is the repeating of a consonant sound. What distinguishes it from alliteration is the fact that the repeated consonant sounds are often a few words apart. Poet’s purpose: Even when apart, same consonants have a very vivid impact on the reader, especially when reading aloud. What consonance does to a phrase is, it strengthens the power of the statement by making it sound as if the speaker is repeating the word. The ‘p’ used in “past that’s rooted in pain” is the most significant out of all three because the consonant has a very bold, attacking, and somehow offensive sound. Saying the sound twice emphasizes the hardships that the slaves and black people had to deal with.

24 What is special? Instead of making it specific to her life, the poet uses broad words, which allows many people (not only black women) to relate to it. The poet uses words with bad connotations, such as haughtiness and sassiness, and turn them into positive words in the poem (as if others were jealous). Although the theme and background of the poem is dark and gloomy, the poem sounds a bit comical, as if the speaker is making fun of “you.”

25 Maya Angelou Reading Still I Rise

26 Thank You Youjin (Jenny) Jang 8B


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