Black Women Who Slayed History: Angela Davis
This Black History Month, we’re highlighting the black woman who helped make our world what it is today. Today, we honor Angela Davis.
Angela Y. Davis is a living legend.
Growing up in Birmingham, Alabama, in the notorious Dynamite Hill neighborhood, she attended a segregated elementary school.
After being accepted into the American Friends Service Committee (A program that placed black students from the south into an integrated school in the North) during her junior year in high school, she expanded her knowledge on socialism and communism. She went off to Brandeis University, where she was one of three black students. She maintained her stance on civil rights issues and had to face her fears head on while progressing towards her PhD.
After college she was hired to be a professor at UCLA, but ran into problems due to her involvement with the US Communist Party and the Black Panther Party, resulting in her termination. She took it to court, won, and got her job back for the remainder of her contract.
After UCLA, she was placed on the FBI’s most wanted list for murder and kidnapping. This was part of the government’s attempts to put away activists like Davis by using them as scapegoats. Her arrest was protested nationwide, John Lennon and Yoko Ono even wrote “Angela” in support for her. She was later acquitted of all charges after spending sixteen months in prison.
For the past sixty years Davis has been there to stand up for basic human rights and being a voice for the oppressed. Whether it was opposing the Vietnam War, standing up for black and gay rights, creating a movement to abolish the prison-industrial complex, or marching with us for gender equality and delivering a beautiful speech at the Women’s March on Washington.
Never shy to speak on controversial issues, Davis has pulled the veil off of many of issues in America, eloquently educating her followers on the racism within the prison system, why violence is necessary for a successful revolution, and police brutality.
Angela Davis set the bar high when it comes to being an activist and an all around badass.