February Celebrity of the Month – Maya Angelou

Photograph of May Angelou, P.S. 188 Celebrity of the Month, February 2020
Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou was born in 1928 and died in 2014.  She was an American poet, singer, writer, and civil rights activist. She published seven autobiographies, three books of essays, several books of poetry, and is credited with a list of plays, movies, and television shows. She received dozens of awards and more than 50 honorary degrees.  Angelou is best known for her series of seven autobiographies, which focused on her childhood and early adult experiences. The first, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings (1969), tells of her life up to the age of 17 and brought her international recognition and acclaim.  Angelou was active in the Civil Rights Movement and worked with Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X.  In 1993, she recited her poem “On the Pulse of Morning” at the first inauguration of Bill Clinton.  Angelou was respected as a spokesperson for black people and women, and her works have been considered a defense of black culture. Her works are widely used in schools and universities worldwide.