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Race, Gender, & Identity in Literature Poem Analysis Project

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Alzberta Nei

on 5 October 2017

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Transcript of Race, Gender, & Identity in Literature Poem Analysis Project

By: Alzberta Nei
Race, Gender & Identity in Literature
Poem Analysis Project

The message of this poem is that you don't have to fit society's standards in order to be beautiful. An everyday woman can be just as beautiful as a model. Your confidence and being your genuine self will make people envy you because you are beautiful in your way. The woman Angelou describes in her poem is herself.She is perfect with her imperfections and she walks just as confident as a model and everyone wants to know how she does it being her genuine self. This is what makes her a phenomenal woman.
Message/ Theme
Repetition/ Epistrophe
"I'm a woman phenomenally. Phenomenal woman, that's me.
This phrase is at the end of every stanza. Angelou wants her audience to be be reminded after every single description she is woman who is phenomenal, remarkable, and extraordinary.
Nature vs artifice
"Pretty woman wonder where my secrets lies. I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size"
This is a comparison between herself and the women who want to be like her. Angelou doesn't fit society's standards, but women want to imitate her confidence. These pretty women who tend to follow trends and societies ideals for women want to be a natural beauty like Angelou.
"It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet"
Angelou is describing the features that make her who she is. She is telling us it's less about the physical features but the features we have within us and confidence.
Literary Techniques
Single story/ Cultural Narrative
Phenomenal woman responds to the single stories and cultural narratives of women feeling the need to be perfect in order for society to deem them beautiful. Angelou is telling women that confidence and being your genuine self is beauty. This poem uses single stories and cultural narratives about pretty women who fit societies ideals who want Angelou's beauty which is not conventional. Angelou resists single stories and cultural narratives about woman's beauty ideals by saying that beauty comes from who you are not how you fit into societies ideals of beauty. The way you present yourself and who you are is what beauty is.
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