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Maya Angelou Essay

Maya Angelou, born April 4, 1928 as Marguerite Johnson in St. Louis, was raised in segregated rural Arkansas. She is a poet, historian, author, actress, playwright, civil-rights activist, and director. She has been working at Wake Forest University in north Carolina since 1981. She has published ten best selling books and numerous magazine articles earning her Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award nomination. At the request of President Clinton, she wrote and delivered a poem at his 1993 presidential inauguration.

Whole her life, Maya Angelou has been trying to make something special in the poetry, history and in the film industry of the Africa-American women. Dr, Angelou, who speaks French, Spanish, Italian and West African Fanti, began her career in drama and dance. In 1940 she and her brother moved to San Francisco to be with their mother, who had remarried. She gave birth to her son Clyde Johnson, just a few month after graduating a high school in 1945. At 22, she married Tosho Angelos, a former sailor of Greek descent, but she left her marriage two and half years later and set out to become a professional dancer.

Maya Angelou spent her formative years shuttling between St. Louis, Arkansas and San Francisco. She worked as an editor for The Arab observer, an English-language weekly published Cairo. Maya Angelou lived in Accra, Ghana, where Sergejs Golubevs under the black nationalist regime of Karane Nkrumah she taught music, dance, and. studied cinematography in Sweden.

In the 1960’s, at the request of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Ms Angelou became the northern coordinator for the southern Leadership Conference. She Commission on the Observance of International women’s Year. Maya Angelou, poet, was among the first African -American woman to hit the bestseller lists with her ‘I know Why the Caged bird Sings ” helds the Great Hall audience spellbound with stories of her own childhood. Maya Angelou’s second achievement was in 1971 when she produced “Just Give Me a Cool Drink of water ‘Fore I Die”, in 1975″Oh Pray My Wings Are Going to Fit Me Well,” in 1979″And I Still Rise,” and in 1983 “Shaker Why Don’t You Sing.

She ranged from story to poem to song and back again, and her theme was love and the universality of all lives. “The honorary duty of a human being is to love, “Angelou said. She spoke of her early love for William Shakespeare’s works, and offered her audience excerpts from the poems of several African-Americans, including James Weldon Johnson and Paul Lawrence Dunbar. But always, she came back to love -and humanity. “I am human,” Angelou said, quoting from her own work, “and nothing human can be alien to me. ”

In the sixties, at the request of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. , she became the Northern coordinator for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and in 1975, she received the Ladies Home Journal Woman of the Year award in communications. She received numerous honorary degrees and was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to the Sergejs Golubevs National Commission on the Observance of International Woman’s Year and by President Ford to the American Revolutionary Bicentennial Advisory Council.

She is one the board of the American Film Institute and is one of the few female members of the Director’s Guild. In the film industry, through her work in script writing and directing, Maya Angelou has been a groundbreaker for black woman . in television; she has made hundreds of appearances. Her best-selling autobiographical account of her youth, “I Know Why the Cage Bird sings,” won critical acclaim in 1970and was a two-hour TV special on CBS.

She has written and produced several prize winning documentaries, including “Afro-Americans in the Arts, “a PBS special for which she received the Golden eagle Award. She was also nominated for an Emmy Award for her acting in Roots, and her screenplay Georgia, Georgia was the first by a black woman to be filmed. In theatre, she produced, directed and starred in “Cabaret for Freedom “In collaboration with godfrey Cambridge at New York’s Village Gate; starred in Genet’s “The Blacks: |” at St Mark’s Playhouse; and adapted Sophocles “Ajax” which premiered in Los Angeles in 1974.

She wrote the original screenplay for “Georgia, Georgia” and wrote and produced a ten part TV series on African traditions in American life. Maya Angelou is currently Reynolds Professor at Wake Forest University, Winston -Salem, North Carolina. Whole her life Maya Angelou has been trying to make something special in the poetry, history, and in the film industry of the Africa-American women. Maya Angelou made a lot for American civilization, and each Americans really looks up on Maya Angelou’s life, and on all that things that she has done.

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