In the book I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings , by Maya Angelou, Marguerite, Uncle Willie, and Vivian are faced with many defeats but are never defeated.
There are many times in which Marguerite is faced with difficulties that she overcomes. Growing up in the poor South as a black and yet triumphing despite that fact is her biggest achievement.At about eight, she and her brother are moved to St.Louis to live with their mother. Moving from the South they are expected to be ignorant, but much to the contrary they are smarter. " We were moved up a grade because our teachers thought that we country children would make our classmates feel inferior- and we did." With that statement she shows that just because she comes from the South does not mean that she is uneducated, and both she and Bailey use this to their advantage and also to taunt their classmates. Much later, at fifteen, she sets her mind to working on the streetcars in San Francisco. The first problem with this plan is that they do not allow Negroes to work on the streetcars. The second problem being that she is too young to work. But she will not be defeated. "I would have the job. I would be a conductorette and sling a full money changer from my belt. I would." With these words and the determination to change the incredible backwardness of the white people she heads to the railway office. She eventually convinces them to back down and she gets a job working as a conductorette for the railways. Despite the maliciously chosen hours, she shows them that she will not back down. Soon after getting her job she becomes pregnant. Through her months of pregnancy she tells no one and no one helps her. She teaches herself how to deal with being an expectant mother and stay in school, and on top of all of this, continue work on the railway. She is completely self- sufficient. " I had had help in the child's conception, but no one could deny that I had had an immaculate conception.