Maya Angelou

1928 - 2014

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Icon of person Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou ( AN-jə-loh; born Marguerite Annie Johnson; April 4, 1928 – May 28, 2014) was an American memoirist, poet, 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 spanning over 50 years. She received dozens of awards and more than 50 honorary degrees. Read more on Wikipedia

Since 2007, the English Wikipedia page of Maya Angelou has received more than 14,469,199 page views. Her biography is available in 105 different languages on Wikipedia (up from 103 in 2019). Maya Angelou is the 800th most popular writer (down from 654th in 2019), the 898th most popular biography from United States (down from 718th in 2019) and the 85th most popular American Writer.

Maya Angelou is most famous for her autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings. The book tells the story of her life from the age of three to seventeen.

Memorability Metrics

  • 14M

    Page Views (PV)

  • 63.38

    Historical Popularity Index (HPI)

  • 105

    Languages Editions (L)

  • 2.95

    Effective Languages (L*)

  • 8.14

    Coefficient of Variation (CV)

Notable Works

The heart of a woman
Biography & Autobiography
In the fourth volume of her autobiography, the author describes her experiences as a singer-dancer in New York and her impressions of the Civil Rights movement.
Just Give Me a Cool Drink of Water 'Fore I Die
Kofi and His Magic
Juvenile Nonfiction
With full-color photographs. Now in paperback, "My Painted House, My Friendly Chicken, and Me is the enchanting story of an eight-year-old girl named Thandi, her village, her mischievous brother, her best friend--a chicken--and the remarkable mural art that is produced by the Ndebele women. With over seventy photographs of the reclusive Ndebele women and their breathtaking paintings, "My Painted House, My Friendly Chicken, and Me documents the passing of traditions from parent to child while introducing young readers to a new culture through a new friend. "Angelou's prose, like the art, is unlike what you've seen before" ("Chicago Tribune). "Poet Angelou's impish narrative and Margaret Courtney-Clarke's ravishing photos create an entrancing vision...." ("Entertainment Weekly). To be published simultaneously with "Kofi and His Magic, a new hardcover collaborative effort by Angelou and Courtney-Clarke. "From the Hardcover edition.
Wouldn't take nothing for my journey now
All God's children need traveling shoes


Among writers, Maya Angelou ranks 800 out of 7,302Before her are Marie d'Agoult, Alexander Litvinenko, Cesare Pavese, Ibycus, Colleen McCullough, and Dio Chrysostom. After her are Pietro Bembo, Jamal Khashoggi, Sarojini Naidu, Tatian, Karl Harrer, and Jan Potocki.

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Among people born in 1928, Maya Angelou ranks 47Before her are Vera Rubin, Federico Bahamontes, Herbert Kroemer, Carlos Fuentes, Francesco Cossiga, and Tommaso Buscetta. After her are Reynaldo Bignone, Alfonso de Portago, Eugene Merle Shoemaker, Li Ka-shing, Arnold Rüütel, and Karlheinz Böhm. Among people deceased in 2014, Maya Angelou ranks 35Before her are Gary Becker, Martin Lewis Perl, Adolfo Suárez, Lorin Maazel, Jack Brabham, and Masaru Emoto. After her are Daniel Keyes, Dobrica Ćosić, Mickey Rooney, Karlheinz Böhm, Luise Rainer, and P. D. James.

Others Born in 1928

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Others Deceased in 2014

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In United States

Among people born in United States, Maya Angelou ranks 898 out of 20,380Before her are Leon Uris (1924), Joseph P. Kennedy Sr. (1888), William Hanna (1910), Hermann Joseph Muller (1890), Irving Fisher (1867), and Magic Johnson (1959). After her are George A. Romero (1940), James Cromwell (1940), Jimmy Connors (1952), Asaph Hall (1829), John B. Calhoun (1917), and Richard Rorty (1931).

Among WRITERS In United States

Among writers born in United States, Maya Angelou ranks 85Before her are Robert Ludlum (1927), Thomas Harris (1940), Neal Cassady (1926), Sinclair Lewis (1885), Raymond Carver (1938), and Leon Uris (1924). After her are Daniel Keyes (1927), Neale Donald Walsch (1943), John Fante (1909), Ambrose Bierce (1842), Dashiell Hammett (1894), and Joseph Campbell (1904).