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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Quotes

i know why the caged bird sings quotesI Know Why the Caged Bird Sings is based on the novel written by African-American poet/playwright Maya Angelou. This television film begins with a  black girl sent to live with their stoic but caring grandmother in Arkansas. Her efforts to better herself run up against the stone wall of bigotry; in addition, the girl is traumatized into sullen silence by a brutal rape. Slowly – she overcomes her many deprivations through the loving support of her dedicated mother.  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Quotes are compiled to inspired readers with powerful words, to ensure the legacy that will live on for generations to come.

“She comprehended the perversity of life, that in the struggle lies the joy.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“Ritie, don’t worry ‘cause you ain’t pretty. Plenty pretty women I seen digging ditches or worse. You smart. I swear to God, I rather you have a good mind than a cute behind.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“Life is going to give you just what you put in it. Put your whole heart in everything you do, and pray, then you can wait.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“To be left alone on the tightrope of youthful unknowing is to experience the excruciating beauty of full freedom and the threat of eternal indecision.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with shades of deeper meaning.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

The caged bird sings with a fearful trill of things unknown but longed for still and his tune is heard on the distant hill for the caged bird sings of freedom.
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“Pursue the things you love doing, and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off you.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“If growing up is painful for the Southern Black girl, being aware of her displacement is the rust on the razor that threatens the throat. It is an unnecessary insult.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

“If you’re for the right thing, you do it without thinking.”
—Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Powerful  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Quotes

  • “The weight of appreciation and the threat, which was never spoken, of a return to Momma were burdens that clogged my childish wits into impassivity.” 
  • “I thought of myself hanging in the store, like a mote imprisoned on a shaft of sunlight. Pushed and pulled by the slightest shift of air, but never falling free into the tempting darkness.” 
  • “The knowledge that we had the power to upset that goddess made us look at each other conspiratorially and smile. It also made her human.” 
  • “The unsaid words pushed roughly against the thoughts that we had no craft to verbalize, and crowded the room to uneasiness.” 
  • “In order to be profoundly dishonest, a person must have one of two qualities: either he is unscrupulously ambitious, or he is unswervingly egocentric.” 
  • “Each single gain feeds into the gains of the body collective.” 
  • “After being a woman for three years, I became a girl.” 
  • “It’s all right if we do a little robbing now.” This belief appeals particularly to one who is unable to compete legally with his fellow citizens.” 
  • “If I’m living a little better now, it’s because I treat everybody right.” 
  • “I had no heart nor art to drag him back to the reeking reality of our life and times.” 
  • “The act of rape on an eight-year-old body is a matter of the needle giving because the camel can’t. The child gives, because the body can, and the mind of the violator cannot.” 
  • “People in Stamps used to say that the whites in our town were so prejudiced that a Negro couldn’t buy vanilla ice cream.” 
  • “Give it everything you’ve got. I’ve told you many times, ‘Can’t do is like Don’t Care.’ Neither of them has a home.” 
  • “I must always be intolerant of ignorance but understanding of illiteracy.” 
  • “I was going to look like one of the sweet little white girls who were everybody’s dream of what was right with the world.” 
  • “I went further than forgiving the clerk, I accepted her as a fellow victim of the same puppeteer.” 
  • “Life was cheap and death entirely free.” 
  • “My obsession with pineapples nearly drove me mad. I dreamt of the days when I would be grown and able to buy a whole carton for myself alone. Although” 
  • “Momma convinced us that not only was cleanliness next to Godliness, but dirtiness was also the inventor of misery.
  • “People whose history and future was threatened each day by extinction considered that it was only by divine intervention that they were able to live at all.” 
  • “If the pretties were expected to make the supreme sacrifice in order to ‘belong,’ what could the unattractive female do?” 
  • “Language is man’s way of communicating with his fellow man and it is language alone which separates him from the lower animals.” 
  • “As a species, we were an abomination. All of us.” 
  • “I swear to God, I rather you have a good mind than a cute behind.” 
  • “If growing up is painful for the Southern Black girl, being aware of her displacement is the rust on the razor that threatens the throat.” 

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Full Movie

The movie traces Maya’s life from when she and her brother move in with their grandmother to the trauma of being raped as a young girl by one of her mother’s boyfriends and the several years of silence that came after the attack.  I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Quotes are offered in the movie.

Best 20 I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Quotes

  • “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.”
  • “It seemed terribly unfair to have a toothache and a headache and have to bear at the same time the heavy burden of Blackness.” 
  • “Although I had no regrets, I told myself sadly that growing up was not the painless process one would have thought it to be.” 
  • “Before he could bring his lips together, his teeth fell, no, actually his teeth jumped, out of his mouth.” 
  • “The dread of futility has been my life-long plague.” 
  • “I had read a Tale of Two Cities and found it up to my standards as a romantic novel. She opened the first page and I heard poetry for the first time in my life…her voice slid in and curved down through and over the words. She was nearly singing.” 
  • “See, you don’t have to think about doing the right thing. If you’re for the right thing, then you do it without thinking.” 
  • “I was basically good. Not understood, and not even liked, but even so, just, and better than just. I was merciful.” 
  • “In order to avoid this bitter end, we would all have to be born again and born with the knowledge of alternatives. Even then?” 
  • “The saying that people who have nothing to do become busybodies is not the only truth. Excitement is a drug, and people whose lives are filled with violence are always wondering where the next ‘fix’ is coming from.” 
  • “Hoping for the best, prepared for the worst, and unsurprised by anything in between.” 
  • “Words mean more than what is set down on paper. It takes the human voice to infuse them with shades of deeper meaning.” 
  • “Anything that works against you can also work for you once you understand the Principle of Reverse.” 
  • “Instead, pursue the things you love doing, and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off you.” 
  • “Life is going to give you just what you put in it. Put your whole heart in everything you do, and pray, then you can wait.” 
  • “Moving from the house where the family was centered meant absolutely nothing to me. It was simply a small pattern in the grand design of our lives.”
  • “Teenagers enjoyed revivals as much as adults. They used the night outside meetings to play at courting. The impermanence of a collapsible church added to the frivolity, and their eyes flashed and winked and the girls giggled little silver drops in the dusk while the boys postured and swaggered and pretended not to notice.”
  • “To me, a thirteen-year-old Black girl, stalled by the South and Southern Black lifestyle, the city was a state of beauty and a state of freedom.” 
  • “The world was moving so fast, so much money was being made, so many people were dying in Guam, and Germany, that hordes of strangers became good friends overnight. Life was cheap and death entirely free.”
  • “The command to grow up at once was more bearable than the faceless horror of wavering purpose, which was a youth.”

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