in the book i know why the caged bird sings
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Although her grandmother doesn't approve Shakespeare become's Maya’s first love. During her life and especially her childhood, literature played a significant role in growth as a person, allowing her to escape from the real world for just awhile.
"During those years in Stamps, I met and fell in love with William Shakespeare. He was my first white love.... it was Shakespeare who said, "When in disgrace with fortune and men's eyes." It was a state of mind with which I found myself most familiar. I pacified myself about his whiteness by saying that after all he had been dead so long it couldn't matter to anyone any more."
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings