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Gather Together in My Name [Paperback]

By Maya Angelou (Author)
Our Price $ 5.53  
Retail Value $ 6.50  
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Item Number 156354  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   192
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 6.88" Width: 4.64" Height: 0.54"
Weight:   0.21 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 1985
Publisher   Bantam
ISBN  0553260669  
EAN  9780553260663  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
In Gather Together in My Name Maya Angelou continues her stunning autobiography. By turns hilarious and heartbreaking, passionate and mellow, she fills the pages with both wisdom and wonder as she brings us along in her struggle and dance through life.
"A heroic and beautiful book." -- Cleveland Plain Dealer.

"This is the story of a great heroine who knows the meaning of a struggle and never loses her pride or dignity. Indeed, her story makes me proud of the human race." -- John Oliver Killens
Poet, writer, performer, teacher and director Maya Angelou was raised in Stamps, Arkansas, and then went to San Francisco. In addition to her bestselling autobiographies, beginning with I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, she has also written five poetry collections, including I Shall Not Be Moved and Shaker, Why Don't You Sing?, as well as the celebrated poem "On the Pulse of Morning," which she read at the inauguration of President William Jefferson Clinton.

From the Trade Paperback edition.
Memoirist, novelist, poet, and dramatist, Maya Angelou is one of the best-loved writers of our time.  She is widely acclaimed for her searing, inspiring writings--and she has been praised for confronting both the racial and sexual pressures on black women, and for infusing her work with a perspective on larger social and political movements, including civil rights.

In the volumes of her bestselling personal story--one of the most remarkable narratives ever shared--Maya Angelou writes about the struggles and triumphs of her extraordinary life with candor, humor, poignancy, and grace. These include:

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

The classic autobiography of her young years.

Gather Together In My Name

The coming-of-age story of her struggle for survival as a young unwed mother.  

Singin' and Swingin' and Gettin' Merry Like Christmas

The saga of her show business career, her failed marriage, and her early motherhood.

The Heart of a Woman

The turbulent story of her emergence as a writer and a political activist.

Wouldn't Take Nothing For My Journey Now

Her exhilarating collection of wisdom, spirituality, and life lessons.

1. Rita's nonconformity is both a blessing and a curse. How do you think it hurts her--and helps her?

2. What does Rita learn about the stability of human relationships? Does she tend to trust others, or is she suspicious?

3. When Rita is thrown into the adult world, her innocence dies. When and how is her innocence reborn?

4. Rita has a series of unsuccessful relationships with men. She supposes that men leave her because they don't think she needs them badly enough. What about her might make men think this? Do you believe that she truly wanted the relationships; why or why not?

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More About Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou Maya Angelou was raised in Stamps, Arkansas. In addition to her bestselling autobiographies, including I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings and The Heart of a Woman, she wrote numerous volumes of poetry, among them Phenomenal Woman, And Still I Rise, On the Pulse of Morning, and Mother. Maya Angelou died in 2014.

From the Hardcover edition.

Maya Angelou lived in Winston-Salem, in the state of North Carolina. Maya Angelou was born in 1928 and died in 2014.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
a must read  Apr 12, 2007
What an inspiration that Maya Angelou is to the world. Her story shows there is hope for everyone in any circumstance to overcome and make a difference to this world. If you don't know her story, this is a must read!! You'll love it.
Inspiring and unapologetic read!  Jan 3, 2007
Maya Angelou continues her life story in Gather Together In My Name. She candidly describes her experiences being a young mother, experimenting with the temptations life presents, and her mistakes. Through it all the reader grows from her experience alongside her. Another page turning examination of the experience of life written with boldness, beauty, and simplicity.
A Difficult and Bitter Lesson  Jul 19, 2006
GATHER TOGETHER IN MY NAME is a difficult book to read. Oh, not because of Angelou's syntax, vocabulary or sentence structure. On the contrary, she writes in a clear, direct style that, if anything, may be a little too unembellished for some readers' pleasure. Now and then, to convey an effect more distinctly to the reader, her words suggest the patois of the speaker whom she is quoting. But no, the difficulty does not lie in the words, but rather in the message. It is painful to experience, even vicariously, the feelings of entrapment, abandonment, and repeated failure that Angelou presents to us. It is frustrating to see her heading from one failed endeavor to another, from one jilting to another, from one desperate attempt "to find her niche" to another.

How could anyone be so naive? How could anyone be so gullible? How could anyone be such a victim? The reader must remind himself, however, that, at the time of her life depicted in this book, Angelou is not the accomplished writer and poet of her later years. She is a confused, culturally lost teenager with a child and has experienced little besides rejection for her entire young life. She is very much an innocent girl with a growing resentment of the world around her but with a trusting optimism and an over-developed faith in her own worth, all of which combine to make her quite vulnerable to those who would prey upon her.

She is the product of a failed marriage and was sent by her father to be raised by his mother in Stamps, Arkansas in the 1940's, a location and era in which being Black was not a positive attribute. Though GATHER TOGETHER deals with her later teenage years, we do get a few glimpses of the segregated society into which she had been born. After having sampled the bitter workaday world of menial jobs in California, she returns to her Southern childhood home without the necessary subservience required of a Black and insults the supercilious clerks in a store in the white part of town, after which she must be hurriedly sent back to California to avoid the inevitable vengeance of the "white boys." The effect of growing up in this kind of hostile, demeaning environment must be kept in mind if the reader is to have any hope at understanding the formative influences that produced the attitudes that we witness in the Angelou of this book.

One quite understandable result of her upbringing is that the young Angelou (though not yet known by that name) has no social relationship whatsoever with Caucasian society. To say that she distrusts that society is not quite accurate, for the word "distrust" suggests that she has examined the society and found it deceitful. However, at this point in her life, she has not even examined it. Black and White society and culture are so different, so mutually exclusive, that they exist on different worlds or in different dimensions, and "never the twain shall meet." Because, perhaps, of her total alienation from Caucasian society and culture, the young Angelou seems to trust Blacks uncritically, even though other Blacks are the consistent source of her painful lessons in life--used by one while his girlfriend is elsewhere, maneuvered into prostitution by another, her baby stolen by a third--Angelou still clings to Black society. But, then, what other option had she?

I worry somewhat that younger readers who cannot relate to the legally segregated United States that endured into the 1960s will not find this personal history very believable. I worry also that those who have not lived in the South (even in the 21st century!) or near a ghetto will find the cultural stigma and limitations of being Black extreme and unrealistic. There are those readers who, not understanding the very real social, cultural, economic, and even legal shackles that bound Blacks long after the physical shackles of slavery were shed, will feel that Angelou is, at the very least, exaggerating the conditions which she had to endure and will place more blame upon her for bringing about her own tribulations than is warranted. However, those readers are the very ones who should take the book to heart, for it may help them comprehend just a little bit more of America's dark underbelly than white, middle-class America normally sees. They will find the message difficult and bitter to assimilate, yet it is a part of our country's history and needs to be learned.
"Find your innocence..." And never lose it again!!!  Oct 15, 2005
There were times as I was reading this book that I cringed and thought to myself "How could she be so stupid." But I had to remind myself of her tender age in this story. She did a lot of things at a young age that many of us may never do in our entire lifetime. Prostitution, Pimping and drugs. This book had so much purpose and that's why I call it "One of the best book that I read all year". It's written like a novel so it doesn't come off preachy or like a self help book. Maya Angelou tells a portion of her story. She uncovers layers of clothing and bares the naked truth of her young adulthood. To me this is not just a story of a black woman and a black womans struggles; this is a story about hard knocks and people of all races and nationalities experience them. "Rita" felt like she had to make her own way, she felt like she needed all of the answers at once. No one was going to take care of her and son. And at the same time, while she felt the burdens of independence, she also felt the emptieness and lonlieness that we all feel some time or another just because we are human. "Rita" made a lot of poor decisions, but that's not the reason that we know her today. We don't know her because she was once a madam on the West Coast, or a prostitute in Stockton, or a cook in Oakland. We know her because she found God's plan for her life and stuck with it.
Possibly the Best Biograhphy I've ever read  Jun 21, 2005
I always as a little girl looked up to Maya Angelou, I always thought she was wonderful. But I didn't know why she was such a wonderful person. Now I understand why. So what if she was a prositute , she had a good reason . She was in love and young. You only live once.I look at life differently now since I read the book. It showed me just because somebody does something it doesn't make them a bad person but they have a reason.

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