Dr. Maya Angelou was 86 years old when she passed away this week, but even after eight long decades of life she remained a sharp, passionate woman wise beyond her years. While some devoured her books or found inspiration in her poetry (Angelou was the first female African American poet laureate), she was much more than one of world’s greatest writers. Maya Angelou was a civil rights activist, a speaker, a philosopher and a mother. She changed the lives of many people with her unique ability to describe the dark complexity and intersectionalities of discrimination, racism, sexism and economic hardship. Here are some of Dr. Maya Angelou’s most famous and inspiring thoughts and speeches.