Maya Angelou.docx - Aaja Troxler Intro to Womenu2019s...

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Aaja Troxler Intro to Women’s Studies 02/26/19 Maya Angelou Maya Angelou was born Marguerite Annie Johnson on April 4, 1928, in St. Louis, Missouri. Upon her parents’ divorce in 1931, she and her brother were sent to Stamps, Arkansas, to live with their paternal grandmother and uncle. A world away from the city life of her early years, Angelou grew up in Stamps’ close-knit black neighborhood under her grandmother’s strict moral and religious guidance. Nonetheless, Angelou was deeply loved by her family there, and her admiration for her hardworking grandmother—the respected owner of a general store—planted the seeds for her powerful prose about strong black women. In 1936, Angelou was sent back to St. Louis to live with her mother. When she was 8 years old, her mother’s boyfriend raped her, leading to a meager one-day jail sentence. When Angelou’s uncles murdered him upon his release, her fear and guilt over naming her assailant led to nearly five years of muteness. Angelou was sent back to Arkansas once again, where she sheltered

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