RACIAL DISCRIMINATION AS THE REPRESENTATION OF AMERICAN SOCIAL LIFE IN 1970S IN MAYA ANGELOU’S SELECTED POEMS
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This thesis is conducted to show how racial discrimination is represented through Maya Angelou selected poems; I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Alone, and Still I Rise. Using Greenblatt’s paradigm of New Historicism, this research tries to examine the discursive events related to racial discrimination in the poems leading to a description of American social condition in 1970s. Therefore, the analysis is not only dealing with the intrinsic elements but also the extrinsic elements of the poems. To establish a discourse of racial discrimination in the poems, this research begins with observing the context of the poems; the phenomena involving the clash between white and black happened in 1970s and Maya Angelou’s personal experience. Then, the analysis of the poems start with observing discursive events established by the poems; the white as the power controller, the weak black as the victim of racial discrimination, and the negotiation of freedom. Those events lead this research to make a conclusion that Maya Angelou is able to present the mental experiences of the black as the minor race in America in 1970s through her three selected poems. This thesis use inductive method. It means the analysis runs from the specific matters to build a general understanding. It focuses more on data explication, interpretation and exploration since the data of this research are in the form of words, phrases, and sentences. Therefore this thesis applies qualitative research. Events which are unrelated to racial discrimination in America in 1970s are not discussed. The intertextuality data related to racial discrimination in America, Maya Angelou’s personal experiences, and racial discrimination in the poems lead this research to prove that Maya Angelou’s selected poems; I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Alone, and Still I Rise represent social anxiety as the impact of racial discrimination in America in 1970s.