Maya Angelo uses many childhood events to express how she feels being black in a white.
She struggles with, in her childhood and young adulthood, strong feelings,.
thinking she is awkward looking, ugly, and not belonging anywhere. Maya says that.
although people may judge her unfairly based upon her awkward looks, they will be.
surprised one day when they see her true self, when she is free (from her cage). Maya.
sympathizes with her Uncle Willie, who is not only black, but was also crippled as a child.
Willie becomes the butt of all jokes in the community, looking awkward and being.
distinctly different. When Maya walks in on Uncle Willie and two strangers, she realizes.
her Uncle is hiding his handicap from the strangers. First, she is confused, but later on she.
concludes that " He must have been tired of being crippled, as prisoners tire of.
penitentiary bars and the guilty tire of blame". Maya feels closer to him after this incident,.
perhaps she realized that they are both birds that tire of their cages.
In the novel, The character, Momma is shown as a strong, resolved survivor.
Maya has much respect for her, even though she is not her biological mother. Momma.
shows strength in the very way she chooses her battles. Although Momma does not go out.
of her way to confront whites and their racism, she is very willing to help those who find.
themselves in disputes and confrontations with whites. She aids a black stranger who is.
fleeing from a mob who wants to lynch him. She was not obligated to open herself to.
danger, yet she let him hide in her Store, exposing her quiet bravery. When Momma is.
referred to as the "Mrs. Henderson" subpoenaed by the judge, whites think of the incident.
as a joke, for only the white women should be referred to as "Mrs." Yet the fact that she.
is given such a title, is evidence of Momma's high status in her community.Another.
example of Momma's strength is the fact that during the depression, she kept her Store.