Google celebrates the work of Dr. Maya Angelou with an illustrated video of her famous poem “Still I Rise”. The poem is narrated with the voice of the late Dr. Maya Angelo mixed in with the voices of Alicia Keys, America Ferrera, Martina McBride, Oprah Winfrey, Laverne Cox and her son Guy Johnson. The honor is in celebration of the late poet and civil rights activist’s 90th birthday.
When you launch the Google homepage a beautiful illustration of the late Dr. Maya Angelou and her secret smile appears on screen. Click the illustration and her sharp clear voice booms the opening sentence, “Still I Rise”. The complete poem is narrated by a series of famous musicians, poets and activists including Dr. Angelou’s son Guy Johnson.
‘The National Women In History’ Museum in Washington D.C. has a standing profile on Dr. Maya Angelou as one of America’s National Treasures.
Here are a few incredible facts about the late Dr. Maya Angelou that will make you want to re-read her poems all over again.
She’s Always Been An Artist.
Dr. Maya Angelou’s interest in the written word and the English language was evident from an early age. Throughout her childhood, she wrote essays, poetry, and kept a journal. As a young girl she took an interest in poetry and memorized works by Shakespeare and Poe.
Civil Rights Was A Big Part Of Her Life.
Dr. Maya Angelou undertook many civil rights activities. She was northern coordinator of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. This organization, which was created in 1957 by Martin Luther King Jr. and originally known as the Southern Leadership Conference, advocates for the rights of African Americans in the United States.
She Was A Member Of The Harlem Writers Guild.
In the 1950s, African American writers in New York City formed the Harlem Writers Guild to nurture and support the publication of Black authors. Dr. Angelou was one of the Guild’s early members. During these years, Angelou began writing her most famous work, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, an autobiography of her life. The book was published in 1969, and was nominated for the National Book Award the same year.
She Was Nominated For A Tony Award.
In 1972, she became the first African American woman to have her screen play turned into a film with the production of “Georgia, Georgia”. The supporting parts that she played in the films, “Look Away” in 1973 and “Roots” in 1977, garnered her Tony nominations.
She Won A Grammy Award.
She has written numerous poetry volumes, such as her first book of poetry, entitled Just Give me a Drink of Water ‘fore I Diiie. She has also recorded spoken albums of her poetry, including “On the Pulse of the Morning”, which she won the Grammy for Best Spoken Album in 1994.
She Will Never Be Forgotten.
Dr. Maya Angelou died on May 28, 2014. Several memorials were held in her honor including ones at Wake Forest University and Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco. To honor her legacy, the US Postal Service issued a stamp with her likeness on it in 2015.