"The Trouble I've Seen: Erma Motton" from American Dreams: Lost and Found by Studs Terkel
Prepared by Dr. Loretta Kasper
Like Erma Motton, the poet Maya Angelou started with a difficult life. Yet she rose above her circumstances and through her writing, she encouraged others in similar circumstances.
- Go to our Search Resources page to find information on the life of Maya Angelou.
- Make a list of the major events and accomplishments in Angelou's life.
- Read and comment on one of Angelou's poems that you find on the Internet. A good site for her poetry may be found at http://www.empirezine.com/spotlight/maya/maya-p1.htm
- Why did you choose this particular poem?
- What impressed you most about the poem that you chose?
- What do you think Angelou's message to the reader is?
- Do you think that the poem accurately conveys Angelou's message? What techniques are most effective in doing this?
- Now, write an essay in which you describe the process Maya Angelou followed in achieving her American Dream. In what way(s) is Angelou's experience similar to and/or different from Motton's? Which of these women do you most admire? Why?
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Web page created by Dr. Loretta Kasper
Professor of English
Site last updated on
April 19, 2004