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Maya Angelou – Your Gal Friday

Today we are talking about a gal who was a poet, an activist, a dancer, an actress, a director, a writer, and an educator. A gal who used her many gifts to teach us empathy, compassion, and inner strength. Today we’re talking about the amazing life and legacy of your gal, Maya Angelou.

Full Episode

Listen Here

YouTube Version

Show Notes & Extras:

  • Highly recommended documentary currently on Netflix Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise. 
  • Where Maya grew up.
  • Her parent’s divorce and living with her grandmother in Stamps, Arkansas.
  • Her rape as a small child and causing her to go mute.
  • Getting her voice back through poetry
  • Moving to Oakland, CA.
  • Giving birth to her son Guy.
  • Marriage to Tosh Angelopulos. 
  • Dancing and singing Calypso from NY to San Francisco.

  • Touring with Porgy and Bess.
  • Turning to writing and joining the Harlem Writers Guild.
  • Her work with Martin Luther King, Jr, and work as the SCLC Northern Coordinator.
  • Performing as the White Queen The Blacks.
  • Marriage to South African civil rights activist Vusumzi Make.
  • Her move to Ghana and Guy’s terrible accident.
  • Malcolm X coming to visit Maya in Ghana (and a brief history of Malcolm X).


  • Maya moving to NY to help Malcolm.
  • Malcolm’s death and Martin’s death.
  • ‘Blacks, Blues, Black! 10-part documentary. Episode 1 by KQED Arts
  • I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings autobiography.
  • The first book of poetry, Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water ‘fore I Diiie. 
  • Georgia, Georgia movie.
  • Marriage to Paul Du Feu.
  • Two more autobiographies.
  • Roots, miniseries.
  • And Still I Rise, a poem, a play, and the title of her 3rd work of poetry. Best when heard her perform it.

  • The Heart of a Woman.
  • Teaching for 32 years at Wake Forest University.
  • On the set of Poetic Justice. Various tellings of the story. Leah’s favorite is from Iconoclast, also check out With George Stroumboulopoulos, and On American Masters
  • Presidental Inguration of Bill Clinton where she performed, “On the Pulse of the Morning.”

  • Her work with Hallmark.
  • Maya published 36 books in her lifetime.
  • Iconoclasts episode with Maya Angelou and Dave Chappel that Leah’s recommends.
  • Her death in 2014.
  • What legacy Phoebe and Leah feel she has left behind.
  • What lessons Phoebe and Leah learned from her.


Like what we do? Want more? On our Patreon page you can access more content including bloopers, wallpapers, idea lists, and behind the scenes.



Your Gal Friday is a weekly podcast about female leaders, innovators and rule breakers.  Your hosts, Dr. Leah Leach & Ms. Phoebe Frear, talk about the life and legacy about a gal as well as what they have learned from her.

Available on iTunesYouTubePodbeanStitcherGoogle Play and more!


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