Amoeblog

Dr. Maya Angelou: From San Francisco Cable Car Operator to Civil Rights Activist, Poet, Author, Actress

Posted by Billyjam, January 27, 2014 10:40am | Post a Comment

Dr. Maya Angelou at Glide Memorial Church in San Francisco

"A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song " – Maya Angelou

In salute of African American living legends, this tribute to Maya Angelou is the first in a series for the 2014 Amoeblog Black History Month. Maya Angelou, who will turn 86 on April 4th, was born in St. Louis, Missouri in 1928. She would go on to live a trailblazing life in which her accolades would include being an activist, author, actress, screenwriter, educator, dancer, singer, poet, and San Francisco cable car operator. In the 1940's during World War II Angelou moved to the city by the bay (she would return to San Francisco a decade later) after winning a scholarship to study dance and acting at the California Labor School. During that time she briefly held a job as a SF cable car operator. Even at that she was a pioneer in her field by being the very first black female cable car conductor. And that would be only one of numerous "firsts" for Angelou during her influential life.

Angelou's 1969 coming-of-age memoir I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, which her friend James Baldwin was instrumental in getting published, made literary history for being the first nonfiction best-seller by an African-American woman. It also broke records by later enjoying a two-year run on The New York Times' paperback nonfiction best-seller list. Angelou was also the first African-American woman to have her screenplay produced when, in 1972, the film screenplay for the film Georgia, Georgia was adapted from her book.

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Show-Me Hollywood -- Missourians in Hollywood on Missouri Day

Posted by Eric Brightwell, October 16, 2013 12:00pm | Post a Comment
Happy Missouri Day! I was not born in Missouri but I count myself fortunate to have grown up there, moving to the Show-Me State from Kentucky when I was four and staying until I was sixteen. Of course, I ended up moving west (St. Louis is the Gateway to the West after all) to the great state of California, following in the footsteps of many before me. For this blog entry, I'd like to honor Missouri natives who worked in Hollywood film.

Pendersleigh & Sons Cartography's Map of Missouri
Pendersleigh & Sons Cartography's Map of Missouri

Also, there's some sporting event involving a cricket-derivative going on right now between Los Angeles and St. Louis -- arguably the greatest cities in their respective states (well, arguable in St. Louis's case). So forgo your animal-style friesCool Ranch tacosFrench Dipskogi tacos, and Mission burritos for one day and prepare a feast of BBQCherry Mashesgooey butter cakeOzark PuddingSt. Louis-style pizzaSt. Paul sandwiches, and toasted ravioli as we honor the Missouri-Hollywood connection.

World Book Night at Amoeba Hollywood, 4/23 - FREE BOOKS!

Posted by Amoebite, April 9, 2012 11:55am | Post a Comment
World Book Night is a celebration of reading and books! Tens of thousands of people will share booksWorld Book Night Amoeba Music with others in their communities across America, spreading the joy and love of reading on April 23rd.

Join us at Amoeba Hollywood as we will distribute FREE copies of Maya Angelou I know why the Caged Bird Sings World Book Night Amoebathe Maya Angelou classic I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, beginning at 10:30am. Just ask for your copy at the info counter on the main floor. Quantities will be limited, so it's first come, first served. 

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings captures the longing of lonely children, the brute insult of bigotry, and the wonder of words that can make the world right. Maya Angelou’s first memoir, published in 1969 is a modern American classic beloved worldwide.

Additionally, April 23 is UNESCO’s World Book Day, chosen due to the anniversary of Cervantes’ death, as well as Shakespeare’s birth and death. A worthy date indeed.