top of page
  • Writer's pictureKatie York

Black History Month Spotlight: Dr. Maya Angelou

****CW: mention of sexual abuse and violence***

Dr. Maya Angelou was a woman of many talents. She was an author, educator, a civil rights activist, and a poet.

As a child, Dr. Angelou suffered the trauma of being raped by her mother's boyfriend. Angelou bravely told a family member. The boyfriend was found guilty of this crime, but was only jailed for one day. Just a few days later, he was murdered. Some theorized Dr. Angelou's family killed him.

Dr. Angelou was subsequently mute for almost five years.

“I thought, my voice killed him; I killed that man, because I told his name,” she later said. “And then I thought I would never speak again, because my voice would kill anyone.”

Records of Dr. Angelou's many accomplishments could fill a book. A few notable achievements:

  • She was the first Black woman to write a screenplay for a major film release (Georgia, Georgia).

  • Her autobiography "I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings" was a New York Times bestseller.

  • She was awarded the presidential medal of freedom in 2010.

Dr. Angelou died at the age of 86 in 2014. Her work lives on.

ID: photo of Dr. Maya Angelou in 1969. She is a Black woman wearing a headwrap and white shirt. She is smiling and looking off camera; radiating joy.

Credit NYT Chester Higgins, Jr.

3 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Introduction to Pronoun Use

Thank you for attending "Introduction to Pronoun Use." Below are some resources related to our discussion! The Trevor Project


bottom of page