Home >> Black History Month >> Inspiring Voices

Check out titles by and about our highlighted African Americans at the San Diego State University Library website at library.sdsu.edu. SDSU students, faculty, and staff also have access to the electronic titles through the Library website ebooks collection. Print titles can be retrieved using the Library Domeside Pickup Service to order your books. Please note many authors have books by and about them in the SDSU Library Juvenile Collection. We hope you enjoy learning more about these and other African Americans from our many resources at the SDSU Library.

Inspiring Voices for Black History Month

 

  • Becoming
  • Obama, Michelle, 1964
  • 2018
  • SDSU Library 3rd Floor Books E909.O24 A3 2018
  • Maya Angelou
  • Angelou, Maya
  • 2007
  • SDSU Library Juvenile Collection 811 A584M46 2007
  • Mae Jemison
  • Calkhoven, Laurie
  • 2016
  • SDSU Library Juvenile Collection 921 J49C15 2016
  • The fire next time
  • Baldwin, James, 1924-1987
  • 1993
  • SDSU Library 3rd Floor Books E185.61 .B195 1995
  • I never had it made
  • Robinson, Jackie, 1919-1972
  • 1972
  • SDSU Library 3rd Floor Books GV865.R6 A29 1972
  • Mary McLeod Bethune
  • Sterne, Emma Gelders, 1894-1971
  • 1957
  • SDSU Library Juvenile Collection 921 B563S83

Quotes

Michelle Obama

“One of the lessons that I grew up with was to always stay true to yourself and never let what somebody else says distract you from your goals. And so, when I hear about negative and false attacks, I really don't invest any energy in them, because I know who I am.”

Michelle Obama

Booker T. Washington

“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.”

Booker T. Washington

Maya Angelou

“It is time for parents to teach young people early on that in diversity there is beauty and there is strength. We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of that tapestry are equal in value no matter their color.”

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou

“For Africa to me… is more than a glamorous fact. It is a historical truth. No man can know where he is going unless he knows exactly where he has been and exactly how he arrived at his present place.”

Maya Angelou

C.J. Walker

“I had to make my own living and my own opportunity. But I made it! Don't sit down and wait for the opportunities to come. Get up and make them.”

Madam C.J. Walker

John Lewis

“When you see something that is not right, not fair, not just, you have to speak up. You have to say something; you have to do something.”

John Lewis

Martin Luther King, Jr.

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dr. Mae Jemison

“Never be limited by other people's limited imaginations. If you adopt their attitudes, then the possibility won't exist because you'll have already shut it out…You can hear other people's wisdom, but you've got to re-evaluate the world for yourself.”

Dr. Mae Jemison, first African-American female astronaut

Harriet Tubman

“God's time [Emancipation] is always near. He set the North Star in the heavens; He gave me the strength in my limbs; He meant I should be free.”

Harriet Tubman

Frederick Douglass

“The soul that is within me no man can degrade.”

Frederick Douglass

James Baldwin

“Read, read, read, never stop reading. And when you can't read anymore…WRITE.”

James Baldwin

Ava DuVernay

“When we're talking about diversity, it's not a box to check. It is a reality that should be deeply felt and held and valued by all of us.”

Ava DuVernay

Alice Walker

“The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don't have any.”

Alice Walker

Vice-President Kamala Harris

“There is no vaccine for racism.”

Vice-President Kamala Harris

Shirley Chisolm

“If they don't give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.”

Shirley Chisholm

Coretta Scott King

“Hate is too great a burden to bear. It injures the hater more than it injures the hated.”

Coretta Scott King, Civil rights leader and author

Langston Hughes

“Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken winged bird
That cannot fly.

Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.”

Langston Hughes, Poet, author

Barack Obama

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”

Barack Obama

Barack Obama

“If you're walking down the right path and you're willing to keep walking, eventually you'll make progress.”

Barack Obama

Jackie Robinson

“Life is not a spectator sport. If you're going to spend your whole life in the grandstand just watching what goes on, in my opinion you're wasting your life.”

Jackie Robinson, First African American baseball player in MLB

Nikki Giovanni

“I really don't think life is about the I-could-have-beens. Life is only about the I-tried-to-do. I don't mind the failure but I can't imagine that I'd forgive myself if I didn't try.”

Nikki Giovanni, Poet

Vernon Jordan

“You are where you are today because you stand on somebody's shoulders. And wherever you are heading, you cannot get there by yourself. If you stand on the shoulders of others, you have a reciprocal responsibility to live your life so that others may stand on your shoulders. It's the quid pro quo of life. We exist temporarily through what we take, but we live forever through what we give.”

Vernon Jordan

Rosa Parks

“I had no idea that history was being made. I was just tired of giving up.”

Rosa Parks

Rosa Parks Mugshot

“Our mistreatment was just not right, and I was tired of it.”

Rosa Parks

George Washington Carver

“How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving, and tolerant of the weak and strong. Because someday in your life you will have been all of these.”

George Washington Carver

Mary McLeod Bethune

“The whole world opened to me when I learned to read.”

Mary McLeod Bethune

Malcolm X

“You're not to be so blind with patriotism that you can't face reality. Wrong is wrong, no matter who does it or says it.”

Malcolm X

Audre Lorde

“It is not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept, and celebrate those differences.”

Audre Lorde

Marian Wright Edelman

“Understand and be confident that each of us can make a difference by caring and acting in small as well as big ways.”

Marian Wright Edelman