“Mrs. Flowers” – An excerpt from I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Concept: Autobiography
Concept: Autobiography What is the author’s purpose of writing an autobiography? Her purpose is to share a personal experience with the reader, and learn from it. Evaluate the characters and the setting of an autobiography. The characters and setting are real; they actually exist and contribute to the events.
Concept: Autobiography What is the author’s point of view? It is the 1st person point of view.
Literary Elements I sopped around the house ….like an old biscuit Simile Her skin was a rich black that would have peeled like a plum…. Sight The odors in the house surprised me… The sweet scent of vanilla had met us. Smell They were flat round ………butter yellow in the center. Sight Her voice slid in and…….over the words. Hearing
Comprehension Check Why isn’t Marguerite talking? She was assaulted by one of her mother’s friends and was shocked. Who is Momma? She is Marguerite’s grand mother. Why does Marguerite like Mrs. Flowers that much? Mrs. Flowers is educated, wise, well mannered and well dressed
Comprehension Check What has Mrs. Flowers do to Marguerite and how? She helped her find her voice by making her realize that to be a good poet she needs a voice. How do Mrs. Flowers and Momma treat each other? Does Marguerite understand that relationship? How do you know? They treat each other like old friends. Marguerite said “ they gave each other that age-group look” which means that she understood that they go long way back.
Comprehension Check Why does Mrs. Flowers have a lasting impression on Marguerite? Mrs. Flowers was educated and liked books, she was elegant and well behaved. Mrs. Flowers was everything Marguerite wanted to be, therefore; when she gave Marguerite few pieces of advice she cherished them like gold.
Literary Analysis • What similarities can you find between Marguerite and the son in “The Wise Old Woman? They both appreciate the wisdom, and talent of old people. They both cherish the advice they take from them. Describe ways in which the mother in “The Wise Old Woman” and Mrs. Flowers help the people around them? Who is Momma? The mother saves her village from being conquered and saves people her own age from being killed. Mrs. Flowers saves Marguerite by showing her love and care. She is also a role model for women in her community.
Literary Analysis • In “Mrs. Flowers” Marguerite speaks only two words. What do you think Angelou means when she writes “It was the least I could do, but it was the most also.”? Marguerite has lost her ability to speak a while ago so it was a huge thing to actually utter few words. Yet; after everything Mrs. Flowers has done for here she couldn’t just answer with a nod to show appreciation; she had to speak. So these very few simple words were huge for Marguerite.
Literary Analysis • Each of these stories involves a relationship between a younger person and an older person. What similarities do you find in these relationships? What differences? The relationships involve love, respect and appreciation. Nevertheless; the relationship in the first story is between and boy and his mother, while in the second it is a girl and her role model. The mother son relationship is more strong and long lasting than the relationship between Marguerite and Mrs. Flowers, yet they both have everlasting impressions on the character of the young person.
Literary Analysis • In what ways might elderly people be considered a community asset? Elderly people might be considered a community asset when they have a lot of needed experience, wisdom, and special talents