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Maya Angelou

Dr. Maya Angelou is hailed as one of the great voices of contemporary literature. A remarkable Renaissance woman, Dr. Angelou is a poet, educator, historian, best-selling author, actress, playwright, civil-rights activist, producer and director. She captivates her audiences lyrically with vigor, fire and perception, and possesses the unique ability to shatter the opaque prisms of race and class between reader and subject throughout her books of poetry and her autobiographies.

Dr. Angelou has authored numerous best-selling books, including I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Wouldn't Take Nothing for My Journey Now, Even The Stars Look Lonesome and Hallelujah, The Welcome Table.

In 1981, Dr. Angelou was appointed to a lifetime position as the first Reynolds Professor of American Studies at Wake Forest University.

Personally selected by President Bill Clinton, Dr. Maya Angelou became only the second poet in U.S. history to have the honor of writing and reciting an original work at the Presidential Inauguration where she delivered her dedicatory poem On The Pulse of Morning at the inaugural ceremony on January, 20 1993. She most recently visited the White House once again when, on December 1, 2005, she delivered her poem, Amazing Peace at the lighting of the National Christmas Tree at the White House.

Dr. Angelou continues to travel the world making appearances on college campuses, spreading her legendary wisdom to America's future. A passionate and powerful speaker, Dr. Angelou challenges her audiences to invest their spirits and hearts in the elevation of the human condition. Considered one of our national treasures, her life represents the value of ethnic, economic and religious diversity in all undertakings. With compassion and candor, Dr. Angelou's works speak to the heart, encouraging us to love life, to persevere through its challenges and to share our gifts with others.

Note: This profile was written in or before 2006.
Read earlier biographies on this page.

Maya Angelou Facts

Birth NameMarguerite Annie Johnson
OccupationWriter, Actress
BirthdayApril 4, 1928 (93)
BirthplaceSt. Louis, Missouri, USA
Height6' (1m83)  How tall is Maya Angelou compared to you?

Selected Filmography

American Masters: Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise DVD
American Masters: Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise
The Power of the Heart
I Hope You Dance: The Power and Spirit of Song
Dave Chappelle + Maya Angelou
The Runaway
Super Chicken on Sesame Street. Episode 4105
Down in the Delta
Elaine Stritch's new perfume, Fitzwilliam grants a wish & Maya Angelou reads from Craigslist
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