Maya Angelou Graduation

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“Graduation,” by Maya Angelou, is an essay written about her eighth grade graduation experience. She shifts her tone originally from anticipation, later to cynicism, and finally moves on to maturation. Angelou juxtaposes multiple matters, alludes to notable individuals, and questions authorities to share her realization with the general public as well as encourage other negroes to be proud of their race. Angelou juxtaposes macrocosm to microcosm. Rather than whining about the fact that the Central School has more than her school, she asserts that Lafayette “[distinguishes] itself” from the Central School by having “neither lawn, nor hedges, nor tennis court, nor climbing ivy” seeming to be proud that Lafayette differs from typical schools. Since “instead of being disappointed [she is] pleased that [she shares] top places [with Henry Reed],” Angelou conveys that she is proud of her education but doesn’t necessarily need to be above everyone else. By expressing that, “it didn’t worry [her] that [she] was… merely graduating from the eighth grade class,” she communicates her satisfaction with her academic standing. Angelou transitions from general to personal view by boasting, “In the store I was the person of the moment,” setting the scene to focus solely on her graduating experience. Without a doubt, Angelou’s…show more content…
During Donleavy’s speech she retorts that “[she wishes] that Gabriel Prosser and Nat Turner had killed all whitefolks in their beds and… Christopher Columbus had drowned in the Santa Maria” displaying the irony of the facts and figures she has studied so arduously since they are all for naught. She originally alludes to the historic figures to convey her pride in her educational attainments, but later on she is embittered by the knowledge which she

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