Wikipedia talk:Peer review/Maya Angelou/archive2

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  • According to WP:HEADINGS, "Headings should not refer redundantly to the subject of the article". The section titles Angelou's work and Style and genre in Angelou's autobiographies should be changed.
    Done.
  • I have never seen "cast-member" before. "cast member" is far more common, though Wiktionary does include "castmember".
    Picky, picky. :) Changed. Actually, I like it when reviews are this picky; it's a good sign and may mean getting through FAC easily. But ya never know. One of my personal WP-goals is to have an FAC go through on the first try. We'll see what happens. Christine (Figureskatingfan) (talk) 19:49, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
  • The article does make correct use of WP:Dashes. Adulthood and early career: 1951—1961, for example, should use the en dash (–), not the em dash (—).
    Done.
  • In Early years, there is a list of authors who influenced Angelou's writing. Some of these are full names, some are just surnames. This should be consistent.
    Stylistic choice, but I'm ok about changing them.
  • The infobox lists Zora Neale Hurston as an influence, but this name does not appear anywhere in the body of the article.
    Removed.
  • "Four days after his release, he was murdered, probably by Angelou's uncles." The use of "probably" implies that this is not a verifiable fact, but the opinion of an author. And which author would that be? Citation needed.
    It's covered in ref 11, which is placed in the next phrase. I think that too many WP articles over-cite, so I'm not sure a citation is necessary for both pieces of information. It's also mentioned in Caged Bird, so I didn't think it was necessary.


  • The following two statements are somewhat redundant: "In her third autobiography, Singin' and Swingin' and Gettin' Merry Like Christmas, Angelou describes her three-year marriage to Greek electrician, former sailor, and aspiring musician Enistasious (Tosh) Angelos in 1951" and "According to her autobiographies and her biographers, she married Tosh Angelos in 1951"
    Now that I look at it, there are problems with these statements that go beyond redundancy. The first sentence makes it sound like her three-year marriage happened in 1951; not correct, so I deleted it and added that the marriage ended in 1954 later on. The second sentence supports the statement before--that the details of her life are often unclear. Perhaps the semi-colon I added helps clarify it? Christine (Figureskatingfan) (talk) 20:23, 18 May 2012 (UTC)
  • I don't see what File:Ghana-Greater Accra.png adds to the article. An actual photograph of the area would be much more valuable to the reader.
    There's not a good image in Commons of Accra in the early 60s, when Angelou was there, so would a more current one be good enough? How about this image: File:Accra Skyline 1.jpg?
    I like it! That image provides a pretty solid idea of the population density and economic development of the area. --Cryptic C62 · Talk 21:52, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
    Done.
  • Ref 29 needs publisher information. Also, I'm not so certain that this would qualify as a reliable source.
    Added info as requested. I can understand your feelings about its reliability, and I agree that it's right on the edge. If it's all right with you, I'd like to keep it for now, and then see what the FAC reviewers think.
    Sure, nothing wrong with that plan. --Cryptic C62 · Talk 21:52, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
  • There is an error in Ref 117 that makes ISBN appear twice.
    Got it. Good catch, thanks.
  • "Scholar Lynn Z. Bloom has compared Angelou's works to the writings of Frederick Douglass, stating that both fulfilled the same purpose: to describe Black culture and to interpret it for her wider, white audience" It is incorrect to use "her" to describe their common purpose, as there are two authors being discussed and one is male. Perhaps "... to describe Black culture and to interpret it for their wider, white audiences".
    Ok, done.
  • Are you certain that Ref 135 the most reliable source available?
    I'm sure I could find another source, but if I recall, I think it was the source that gave the best information. What's the problem with it? Is there an issue about using MTV, a music website?
    Well, it's not exactly the most scholarly source I've ever encountered. But in any case, what do you mean it "gave the best information"? The source is only used to back up the following statement: "In 2009, Angelou wrote "We Had Him", a poem about Michael Jackson, which was read by Queen Latifah at his funeral." This bare-bones fact could be pulled from anywhere! --Cryptic C62 · Talk 21:52, 20 May 2012 (UT
    IIRC, it was the best source I could find at the time. I'll try again. Christine (Figureskatingfan) (talk) 18:22, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
    Sure enough, it was still hard to find a more reliable source than MTV.com this time around, but I think I managed it. Is Variety acceptable to you? Christine (Figureskatingfan) (talk) 18:45, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
    Yep, works for me. --Cryptic C62 · Talk 18:08, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
  • The page is categorized under Category:Pseudonymous writers, Category:Rock Bottom Remainders members, and Category:Spingarn Medal winners, but the phrases "pseudonym", "Rock Bottom", and "Spingarn" do not appear anywhere in the article.
    They were added after previous versions, and after the numerous re-writes, disappeared from the text. Thanks for the catch; I tend to ignore categories. ;) I also found a couple more that didn't fit.
    On a related note, how many places can one person be from? The categories say that Angelou is from St. Louis, San Francisco, and Arkansas. San Francisco seems the most questionable and unnecessary. --Cryptic C62 · Talk 21:52, 20 May 2012 (UTC)
    Ha ha. Angelou moved around a lot during her life. That's why, in Themes in Maya Angelou's autobiographies (one of this article's forked articles), "Travel" is a subsection. Some of her autobiographies have been called "travel narratives", for good reason. I wanted, for All God's Children Need Traveling Shoes, to include a map of all the places she visits, but I was never able to get it together. She spent part of her growing up years in all places. If you like, we can get strict and only keep St. Louis, where she was born.
    Some of the "from X" category pages state the entries should be people who were born there or choose to identify themselves as being from there. Do we have any idea how Maya would identify herself? I'm going to let you figure this out, since you're much more familiar with the literature than I am.
    Okey doke. I think that Dr. Angelou would identify herself as being born in St. Louis and "being from" Stamps, Arkansas, so I'm fine with keeping them.
  • "Evidence suggests that Maya Angelou, who preferred to be called "Dr. Angelou" by people outside of her family and close friends,[72] was partially descended from the Mende people of West Africa." Two extremely unrelated tidbits crammed into one sentence. Bad.
    Ouch, ok. ;) I moved the first phrase down a couple of paragraphs and separated it from the next thought. Do you think it belongs there? I think it's important enough to include somewhere in the "Personal life" section.
    Meep, I don't have a problem with it. Gillespie thought it was important enough to mention, so why shouldn't we? --Cryptic C62 · Talk 18:08, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
  • The way in which the autobiographies are mentioned in the Biography section is somewhat confusing. Caged Bird is mentioned in the time period that it covers (1928–1945), but also in the time period that it was written (1968–1969). For the other autobiographies, particularly Singin and Swingin, it isn't clear from the phrasing if the book was written about 1951–1961 or during 1951–1961. I am of the opinion that the autobiographies can be used for references and quotes for the time periods about which they were written, but they should not be mentioned in the Biography section until the time periods during which they were written.
    I can understand your feelings, and I went ahead and reluctantly made the changes. I still think that this article should include a timeline of the years covered by each autobiography, though. What do you think about adding a list to that effect somewhere in the Bio section, even if it's in a note?
    Thanks again for the added notes. It's greatly appreciated. Christine (Figureskatingfan) (talk) 19:18, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
    No problem. I agree that a timeline would be informative. I think the best place for it would be in the Works section. --Cryptic C62 · Talk 18:08, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
    Ok, will do. Christine (Figureskatingfan) (talk) 19:39, 22 May 2012 (UTC)
  • "She began being awarded with hundreds of awards and honorary degrees from colleges and universities from all over the world." I'm going to take a wild guess and say that this was inserted by an IP.
    Um, I hate to admit it, but no. More sloppy writing. Changed to: She began being awarded with hundreds of awards, including over thirty honorary degrees from colleges and universities from all over the world.
    I want you to read the phrase "she began being awarded with hundreds of awards" out loud. Ask yourself or someone nearby if the phrase sounds like something that belongs in a Wikipedia article (this is one of my favorite techniques for finding clunky writing). Also, source for this claim? --Cryptic C62 · Talk 19:41, 21 May 2012 (UTC)
    Ok. How 'bout: She was awarded with hundreds of awards during this period... Ref added; I also wikilinked the statement to List of awards and nominations received by Maya Angelou.
    The problem was "awarded with awards", which I have changed to "given awards". --Cryptic C62 · Talk 22:19, 27 May 2012 (UTC)
    Ha, now I see. Thanks for the assistance.
  • I'm seeing some inconsistency in the way the poems are referred to. On the Pulse of Morning is usually in quotation marks, but appears in Later works in italics.
    Fixed, thanks again for the catch.