Date of Award

Spring 5-20-2019

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Timothy Askew, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Georgene Bess Montgomery, Ph.D.


This study examines Maya Angelou as a powerful African-American woman in the twentieth century who impacted generations of African Americans. Her biographies and selected works speak strongly and wisely about gender and racial empowerment. This empowerment was sown in her childhood and could be traced throughout her life. It is also a fact that seldom does the realization of one’s race and gender take place at such an early age as with Maya Angelou. She was highly marginalized not only in terms of gender but also in terms of race with acute consciousness.