A Month of Awesome Women: Mama Afrika, Miriam Makeba

BlogHer Original Post

A Month of Awesome WomenEvery day in March 2011, we'll be talking about one awesome woman and why she's so powerful. Some will be well known; some may be new to you, so check out all the awesome women in the series now.


When Suzanne Reisman blogged about the death of Miriam Makeba, "Mama Afrika," in 2008, the first thing I did was head over to YouTube to listen to some of her music. Today, on what would have been Makeba's 79th birthday, I invite you to do the same.

Miriam Makeba was not just an amazing singer -- she was a civil rights and human rights activist who was exiled from South Africa for more 30 years.

Last year, Baratunde blogged about Honda's use of Miriam Makeba's music to sell cars.

Miriam Makeba
Image: ©EFE/ZUMA Press


Pata Pata is an especially joyful song. It's designed to make you dance. It's beautiful, and now that beauty has been corrupted. I know this has happened to great works of art before. I know it will happen again. I don't care...


I have to say, I agree with him. I don't want to hear Miriam Makeba's voice and think about a car. I want to hear her voice and think about peace and love and strong women who change the world with their voices and their music.

Want to learn more? Visit this YouTube video of clips from Miriam Makeba's life.



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