Women in History

Women have always played an important role in history. There were good women, bad women, destroyers of society and shapers. There were women who were unwillingly caught up in the events of history and those who made them happen. Some women were just downright interesting. This blog will post about them all. Requests are welcome.
We post twice a week. All asks are answered publicly unless otherwise indicated. Tag this blog with #historicwomenblog.

Miriam Makeba 1932- 2008

Miriam Makeba was a vocal musician born in Prospect Township near Johannesburg. In the 1950s she was incredibly popular throughout South Africa, working as a full time singer.  

In 1959 Miriam sang for the documentary Come Back AfricaThis attracted the interest of Harry Belafonte who invited the singer to The United States. In 1960 she was denied reentry into South Africa so she lived in the US for the next three decades. Her best known song “Pata Pata" which was released in Africa in the late 1950s was released in the US in 1967.

Miriam was also a social activist. She spoke out against South Africa’s apartheid regime and eventually became know as Mama Africa. She was a visible opponent to the regime, and used that visibility to bring attention to her country. 

"Everybody now admits that apartheid was wrong, and all I did was tell the people who wanted to know where I come from how we lived in South Africa. I just told the world the truth. And if my truth then becomes political, I can’t do anything about that."

Miriam died in Italy of a heart attack in 2008 at the age of 76. She had released 30 original albums and 19 compilation albums.

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    Never got to meet you but rest in peace, auntie.
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    Mama Makeba being a queen as she does. “ I just told the world the truth. And if my truth then becomes political, I...
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