Her accomplishments are many not only as author of remarkable books, but she also is a film director and producer and has received 30 honorary doctorates. As an actress, she was nominated for an Emmy Award for her performance in Roots. According to an interview in Essence magazine, writing autobiographies is what she feels she knows best. "I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings," her account of her traumatic youth, of rape, of being unable to speak for a long time, of having her only son, was followed by sequels sharing the pitfalls and triumphs of a black woman's spiritual and personal liberation. although she had been married several times to men from three continents, she was the single mother of her son, one young man's grandmother and mother of the heart to three women. She has lived all over the world, but currently calls Winston Salem, North Carolina, her home.
Ms. Angelou wrote and delivered the inaugural poem for President Clinton January 20, 1993. "On the Pulse of Morning" was soon published in paperback by Random House and later even won a Grammy Award for "Best Spoken Word".
An innovative dancer, Duncan often interpreted poetry through her work. In a time when swim suits covered women from head to toe, she dared to "show leg" in her costumes and dared to even dance barefoot. She shocked "proper women and men" at one performance with a costume of raspberry ice colored silk and gauze that threatened to reveal her naked body with every turn and twist of the dance.