Maya Angelou on Courage

Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 9:00am
Photo by Scott Eells

Maya Angelou on Courage

Just weeks before her death, our host Krista Tippett interviewed the great writer Dr. Maya Angelou. In audio from that interview, Maya Angelou remembers her encounter with W.E.B. Du Bois in Ghana — and offers some wisdom for upcoming generations:

"I would encourage young men and women, black and white and Asian and Spanish-speaking and all, to look at Dr. Du Bois and realize that courage is the most important of all the virtues, because without courage you can’t practice any other virtue consistently. You can’t be consistently fair or kind or generous or forgiving any of those without courage."


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Mariah Helgeson

is a digital editor at On Being. She earned a degree in International Affairs with concentrations in the Middle East and Conflict Resolution from George Washington University. She grew up in Minnesota and was a program associate at the Sustained Dialogue Campus Network. When she’s not submerged in a good book she might be found laughing with her teenage sisters or playing chamber music.

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I was struck with a profound sense of peace after listening to Dr. Angelou's exhortation to our young people on the virtue of courage. What a world this would be if we all courageously lived honest lives - with each other and ourselves.

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