I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

Titled after a stanza from Paul Laurence Dunbar’s poem “Sympathy,” I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings is the first of a series of seven autobiographical novels by African-American poet and writer Maya Angelou. Personally deeply involved and affected by the civil rights movement, the volume explores racism and identity in her early life.   I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was nominated for the National Book Award in 1970. However, due to its depiction of controversial subjects such as sexuality, lesbianism and rape, the use of the novel in classrooms has been frequently challenged.

First Edition Identification and Notes

Random House published the first edition of the novel in 1969. Markings for a first edition are characteristic of the publisher with the words "First Edition" clearly stated on the copyright page. The first issue also has a red-stained top edge.

Other Collectible or Notable Editions

In 1999, Easton Press published a special limited edition of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings in full leather with gold accents, silk end papers, and a ribbon marker.

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Available copies

cover of I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings.

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings.

by Angelou, Maya

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Raptis Rare Books
Published
1969
Item Price
$3,800.00

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New York: Random House, 1969. First edition of Angelou's critically acclaimed first book. Octavo, original first issue book, with the top edge stained red. Presentation copy, inscribed by the author on the front free endpaper, "Roger Stephens, Joy! Maya Angelou." Fine in a fine dust jacket. Jacket design by Janet Halverson. An exceptional example. "This testimony from a black… Read more
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$3,800.00
cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Burnside Rare Books, ABAA
Published
1969
Condition
Near Fine
Edition
First Edition
Item Price
$3,500.00

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New York: Random House, 1969. First Edition. Near Fine/Near Fine. First edition, first printing. First issue with red topstain. Signed by Maya Angelou and inscribed to a former owner on the front free endpaper. Bound in publisher's original black cloth stamped in gilt and metallic red. Near Fine with light foxing to textblock edge, browning to endsheets and… Read more
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$3,500.00
cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings.

by ANGELOU, Maya.

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Peter Harrington
Published
1969
Item Price
$3,414.95

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New York: Random House, 1969. Her first volume of autobiographical fiction, inscribed First edition, first printing, inscribed by the author on the dedication page, "Bill Berger, Joy! Maya Angelou. 1/88". Angelou has previously been quoted as saying that "When you wish someone joy, you wish them peace, love, prosperity, happiness... all the good things". Inscribed copies of Maya Angelou's… Read more
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$3,414.95
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

Seller
Winthrop and Wales, LLC
Published
1969
Condition
BOOK NEAR FINE
Edition
1st Edition
Item Price
$1,195.00

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New York: Random House, 1969. 1st Edition. Hard Cover. BOOK NEAR FINE/JACKET VERY GOOD+. 8vo - over 7¾"" - 9¾"" tall. Signed by Author. SIGNED, DATED, INSCRIBED ""JOY"" BY THE AUTHOR on library card attached to the book. AN EXTREMELY CLEAN, ATTRACTIVE COPY WITH A BRIGHT DUSTJACKET IN NEW, GLOSSY BRODART. ANGELOU HAS SIGNED, DATED… Read more
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$1,195.00
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I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

by Angelou, Maya

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VAGABOND BOOKS
Published
1969
Condition
Fine
Edition
FIRST
Item Price
$1,000.00

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RANDOM, 1969. Book. Fine. Hardcover. Signed by Author(s). FIRST. A FINE FIRST EDITION IN FINE DJ First edition, First printing, first state. original first issue book, with the top edge stained red. TIPPED IN SIGNATURE WITH COMPLIMENTARY CARD..
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Ground Zero Books, Ltd.
Published
2015
Condition
Very good
Edition
Signed Collector's Edition
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$975.00

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The Easton Press, 2015. Signed Collector's Edition. Leather bound and boxed. Very good. [8], 281, [1] pages. Boxed, With Certificate of Authenticity laid in, signed by Maya Angelou and witnessed by Mildred Garris on 2/16/99. Also signed by Roy S. Pfeil, Publisher. Signed on a special signature page by Maya Angelou with the sentiment Joy!. Maya Angelou (born… Read more
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cover of I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Bookbid Rare Books
Published
2013
Condition
Fine
Edition
Limited Edition
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$900.00

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Easton Press, 2013. Limited Edition. Hardcover. Fine. Offered here in an exclusive leather-bound, slipcased edition, bearing the signature of the late Presidential Medal of Freedom winning author is Angelou's first and most successful autobiography. Bound in fine genuine leather sealed in publisher's shrink wrap, accented with 22k gold lettering and decorations. Page ends are gilded in 22k gold.… Read more
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Carpetbagger Books, IOBA
Published
1969
Condition
Near Fine
Edition
First Edition
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$756.00

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New York: Random House, 1969. First Edition. Hardcover. Near Fine/Near Fine. First Issue. Near Fine in a Near Fine jacket, a couple small closed tears, faded at the spine. Black cloth with gold and red gilt lettering and rules on the spine and front board. Square and firmly bound with a red top stain, bookplate on the front… Read more
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Burnside Rare Books, ABAA
Published
1969
Edition
First Edition
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$750.00

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New York: Random House, 1969. First Edition. First edition, first printing, first issue. [vi], 281, [1] pp. Bound in publisher's black cloth stamped in gilt with publisher's imprint in metallic red; with red topstain. Slight lean, tiny smudge on page facing title page, else Fine in a bright, unclipped dust jacket with faint staining to verso near foot. An… Read more
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings [Signed, Full Leather Hardcover Binding with Gilt]

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings [Signed, Full Leather Hardcover Binding with Gilt]

by Angelou, Maya

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R. Siedlecki Vintage Books
Published
1999
Condition
Fine
Item Price
$675.95

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Norfolk, Connecticut: The Easton Press, 1999. [1999] FULL GENUINE LEATHER FINE BINDING HARDCOVER published in 1999 by the high-quality publisher Easton Press -- NOT THE REGULAR TRADE CLOTH BINDING, CHEAPER COMPOSITE LEATHER, SIMULATED LEATHER, FACSIMILE, OR BOOK PRINTED ON-DEMAND. SIGNED BY MAYA ANGELOU ON THE SPECIAL SIGNED PAGE; SHE ALSO SIGNED AND DATED THE CERTIFICATE OF AUTHENTICITY SLIP LAID IN.… Read more
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$675.95
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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Maxwell's House of Books
Published
1999
Condition
Very Good
Edition
Limited Edition
Item Price
$550.00

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The Easton Press. A beautiful crisp clean leather bound hardcover copy in near fine condition, Easton press bookplate without name on front endpaper and faintly bumped upper corners. Signed by author. . Very Good. Hardcover. Limited Edition. 1999.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings [SIGNED]

by Angelou, Maya

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Burke's Book Store
Published
1999
Condition
Very Good
Edition
Limited Edition
Item Price
$502.00

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Easton Press, 1999. Limited Edition. Leather. Very Good. Full leather. Minor thumbing to gilt edges. Signed.
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I Know why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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T. A. Borden Books
Published
1969
Condition
Fine in Fine dust jacket
Edition
First Edition
Item Price
$500.00

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Description:
New York: Random House. Fine in Fine dust jacket. 1969. First Edition. Hardcover. 1st state, $5.95 on flap; top edge red; tiny edge tear on jacket else fine; 8vo 8" - 9" tall; 281 pages .
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I Know why the Caged Bird Sings (Signed)

by Angelou, Maya

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Robert's Bookshop
Published
1999
Condition
Fine with No dust jacket as issued
Edition
Limited Edition
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$500.00

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Norwalk, CT: The Easton Press. Fine with No dust jacket as issued. 1999. Limited Edition. Hardcover. Small 4to 9" - 11" tall; 281 pages .
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Burnside Rare Books, ABAA
Published
1969
Edition
First Edition
Item Price
$400.00

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New York: Random House, 1969. First Edition. First edition, first printing, first issue. [vi], 281, [1] pp. Bound in publisher's black cloth stamped in gilt with publisher's imprint in metallic red; with red topstain. Very Good with former owner's inkless emboss to front free endpaper, small dampstain to top edge at prelims,small coffee stain to copyright page; in a… Read more
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$400.00
cover of I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings (Broadside)

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings (Broadside)

by Angelou, Maya

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Derringer Books
Published
1994
Condition
Near Fine
Edition
First edition
Item Price
$350.00

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Description:
Providence: Lost Roads Project, 1994. First edition. Loose Sheets. Near Fine. Large single sheet of deckle-edged paper containing an excerpt from Maya Angelou's 1969 classic first novel. Published in 1994 by C. D. Wright and others as part of the Lost Roads Project and published in Fayetteville at the University of Arkansas Press. This broadside along with the… Read more
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Burnside Rare Books, ABAA
Published
1997
Item Price
$300.00

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Description:
New York: Random House, 1997. Signed by Maya Angelou on the half title with the inscription "Joy!" [vi], 281, [1] pp. Bound in publisher's black boards with copper lettering. Near Fine, corners a little bumped, in a Near Fine dust jacket with a subtle rubbing and a few tiny identations on the back panel.
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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou Maya

Seller
Monarchy books
Published
1969
Condition
Good
Edition
First Edition
Item Price
$235.46

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Description:
New York: Random House, 1969. First Edition. Hardcover. Good/Good. Price Clipped, Clean With No Remainder Mark Or Gift Inscription. The Book Is Good Condition. Price Clipped. Inscription At The 1St End Paper. Random House 1St Printing Stated At The Copy Right Page. Creased- We ship from Canada. Specializing in academic, collectible and historically significant, providing the utmost… Read more
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

Seller
Jeff Stark
Published
1980
Condition
Good
ISBN
0553256157395
Item Price
$175.00

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Toronto, NY, London: Bantam Books. A 27th printing manufactured sometime around 1980-1986 by inference from the copyright page and author's holographic date. Inscribed in blue ink to someone named Laura _______ and boldly on the title page: "______Joy! Maya Angelou 4/86." In her typical scrawl. About Good to VG minus due to light to light-medium cover wear and… Read more
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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Bonita
Condition
Good
ISBN
9780307879394
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$134.86

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Audio CD. Good. Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

Seller
Russian Hill Bookstore
Published
1969
Condition
Very Good
Item Price
$100.00

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Description:
New York, NY: Random House, 1969. Book. Very Good. Hardcover. 281 pages, 8vo. Jacket price clipped. Third Printing, with number line ending in the number 3. Black cloth boards with gilt lettering along spine and front cover, red Random House emblem along spine. Shelfwear to DJ: light scuffing along edges and covers, light fading along spine edges. DJ in mylar.… Read more
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Wonder Book
Condition
Used - Like New
ISBN
9780553279375
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$99.99

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Bantam. Used - Like New. Like New condition. A near perfect copy that may have very minor cosmetic defects.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Wonder Book
Condition
Used - Very Good
ISBN
9780553279375
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$99.99

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Bantam. Used - Very Good. Very Good condition. Owner's name on page edges.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Bonita
Condition
Good
ISBN
9780435124274
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$87.98

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Hardcover. Good. Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Sanctum Books
Published
2002
Condition
New
ISBN
9780375507892
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$84.00

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Random House, 2002. Hardcover. New. 8.52 x 5.78 cm.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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A - Z Books
Published
2002
Condition
New
ISBN
9780375507892
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$84.00

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Random House, 2002. Hardcover. New. 8.52 x 5.78 cm.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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BookVistas
Published
2002
Condition
New
ISBN
9780375507892
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$84.00

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Random House, 2002. Hardcover. New. 8.52 x 5.78 cm.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Vikram Jain Books
Published
2002
Condition
New
ISBN
9780375507892
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$84.00

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Random House, 2002. Hardcover. New. 8.52 x 5.78 cm. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings Angelou, Maya
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I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS.

by Angelou, Maya.

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Maxwell's Bookmark
Edition
1st edition. Later printing.
Item Price
$75.00

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Pages 281 pp.8vo. Clothbound. 1st edition. Later printing. Author's first book. Inscribed, dated and signed in ink by the author’s mother on the front free endpaper. A unique association copy. Top of dust jacket back panel and flap with some staining causing the top edges of latter part of the text block to cockle… Read more
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by ANGELOU MAYA

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1993-01-01
Condition
New
ISBN
9780748710768
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$74.05

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Bantam, 1993-01-01. Paperback. New. New.
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cover of I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1984-01-01
Condition
New
ISBN
9780860685111
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$65.77

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HACHETTE INDIA, 1984-01-01. Paperback. New. New.
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cover of I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

by ANGELOU MAYA

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Vikram Jain Books
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New
ISBN
9780812980028
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$63.00

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RANDOM HOUSE. New. 8.54 x 5.66 cm. I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS ANGELOU MAYA
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cover of I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

by ANGELOU MAYA

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Sanctum Books
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New
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9780812980028
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$63.00

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RANDOM HOUSE. New. 8.54 x 5.66 cm.
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cover of I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

by ANGELOU MAYA

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A - Z Books
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New
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9780812980028
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RANDOM HOUSE. New. 8.54 x 5.66 cm.
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cover of I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

by ANGELOU MAYA

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BookVistas
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New
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9780812980028
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$63.00

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RANDOM HOUSE. New. 8.54 x 5.66 cm.
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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1978-07-01
Condition
New
ISBN
9780553122527
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$62.35

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Bantam Books, 1978-07-01. Mass Market Paperback. New. New.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1971-01-01
Condition
New
ISBN
9780553108422
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$61.26

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Bantam Doubleday Dell, 1971-01-01. Paperback. New. New.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1983-06-01
Condition
New
ISBN
9780553237795
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$60.69

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Bantam Books, 1983-06-01. Mass Market Paperback. New. New.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1983-04-01
Condition
New
ISBN
9780553256154
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$59.74

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Bantam, 1983-04-01. Mass Market Paperback. New. New.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1983-05-01
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New
ISBN
9780553279375
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$59.23

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Bantam, 1983-05-01. Mass Market Paperback. New. New.
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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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GridFreed LLC
Published
1997-05-12
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New
ISBN
9780553380019
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$59.21

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Bantam, 1997-05-12. Paperback. New. New.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings - Multiple Critical Perspectives

by Maya Angelou

Seller
Bonita
Condition
Good
ISBN
9781603891608
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$58.50

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Paperback. Good. Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Bonita
Condition
Good
ISBN
9780553139044
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$56.35

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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Bailey Bonzo Books
Published
2000
Condition
Fine
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$75.00 $56.25
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London: The Folio Society, 2000. Book. Fine. Decorative Cloth. 4to - over 9¾" - 12" tall. Fourth printing, 2004, so stated. Brown cloth with brown wrap around design with gilt lettering to the spine. 254 pp. This copy is FINE in a FINE dark brown slipcase. No noticeable blemishes. Looks and feels unread. Front cover design by David Sellars.… Read more
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Angelou, Maya

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Bonita
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Good
ISBN
9780553108422
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$53.37

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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Abridged Audio Edition)

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Abridged Audio Edition)

by Angelou, Maya

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Bonita
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Good
ISBN
9780679451730
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$53.02

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Audio CD. Good. Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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Bonita
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Good
ISBN
9780553131840
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$51.86

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cover of I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Barnes & Noble Reader's Companion)

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (Barnes & Noble Reader's Companion)

by Angelou, Maya

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Bonita
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Good
ISBN
9781586638641
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$51.40

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Paperback. Good. Access codes and supplements are not guaranteed with used items.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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Ergodebooks
Published
1983-04
Condition
Good
ISBN
9780812417371
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$50.91

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Perfection Learning, 1983-04. Hardcover. Good.
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I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

by Maya Angelou

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Ergodebooks
Published
2009-04-09
Condition
Good
Edition
Reprint
ISBN
9781439568811
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$50.19

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2009-04-09. Reprint. Library Binding. Good.
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