Author Dr. Maya Angelou’s collection of essays from her 1993 book Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now features an essay titled “Passports to Understanding.” In her writing, the legendary essayist drops gem in her discussion of travel and the miraculous transformation it can have on souls brave enough to embrace the journey.
Listed below are some of our favorite quotes from the Godmother of Black Travel’s writings. Hopefully they’ll motivate you like they have our staff in the pursuit of evolution, compassion and understanding of ourselves and others.
“Human beings are more alike than unalike, and what is true anywhere is true every-where, yet I encourage travel to as many destinations as possible for the sake of education as well as pleasure.”
“Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.” – Maya Angelou
“It is necessary, especially for Americans, to see other lands and experience other cultures. The American, living in this vast country and able to traverse three thousand miles east to west using the same language, needs to hear languages as they collide in Europe, Africa, and Asia.”
“A tourist, browsing in a Paris shop, eating in an Italian ristorante, or idling along a Hong Kong street, will encounter three or four languages as she negotiates the buying of a blouse, the paying of a check, or the choosing of a trinket. I do not mean to suggest that simply overhearing a foreign tongue adds to one’s understanding of that language. I do know, however, that being exposed to the existence of other languages increases the perception that the world is populated by people who not only speak differently from oneself but whose cultures and philosophies are other than one’s own.”