The problem regarding racial equality can be traced as far back as the African-American slave trade of the 1400s. But even after the Civil War and the Reconstruction of the United States, there is no denying the fact that a racial tension still exists between "whites" and "blacks." Many authors, artists, and poets have portrayed this tension, sometimes even going as far back as inspiring their audience through language akin to the spirituals found during the time of slavery. Maya Angelou, renowned American poetess and author, is but one of many who voices the plight of racial inequality. In her works "I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings" and "Still I Rise," she portrays the struggle of African-Americans throughout the centuries of racial oppression and segregation.
To be able to understand the historical contexts derived from the two works of poetry, one should delve into the origin and...
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