Maya Angelou Inspiration

Decent Essays

Marguerite Annie Johnson (Maya Angelou) was a civil rights activist, writer, poet, actor, dancer, director. For some, the list can go on and on. Most importantly she was more than an inspiration for women, the african-american race, or even the U.S. But for the world. She has won over fifty honorary degrees and is the definition of what it takes to live a fulfilled life. Here is her story.

Early Life

Maya Angelou was born on April 4, 1928 in St. Louis, Missouri where she lived with her father, mother, and older brother, Bailey. After her parents divorced when she was just three years old, her father sent her and Bailey to live with their Grandmother in Stamps, Arkansas.

In Stamps for just four years she later moved in with her mother. While she was around the age seven or eight, Maya was sexually abused by her mother’s boyfriend, Mr. Freeman. She told her relatives and Mr. Freeman was found guilty. Four days after his release, he was killed by Maya’s uncles. For next couple of years Maya was in mental shock and kept quiet. During this time Maya had found a passion for American literature and poetry.

At the age of fourteen she lived with her mother and brother in Oakland, California where she worked as a car conductor. She was awarded a scholarship to attend California Labor School where she studied the art of dance and acting.

She gave birth to her son Clyde at the age of seventeen and changed her name from Marguerite Annie Johnson to Maya Angelou.



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