Sunday, January 22, 2017

Another piece of election-related mail, this time from Thom C.




One of the stamps features author and poet, Maya Angelou (April 4, 1928 – May 28, 2014). 




At first glance the stamp art would appear to be taken from a photograph, however it is in fact based on a portrait painted in the hyper-real style.

Angelou wrote many books, essays, plays, poems, and scripts, including cookbooks and children's books. She is perhaps best know for her work 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings', the first volume of her autobiographical series, published in 1969. This book has also been the subject of censorship, having been challenged or banned from high school curricula and libraries. 

The stamp itself caused some controversy upon its release, as the quotation, which is widely cited as having been written by Angelou, is actually attributable to Joan Walsh Anglund. Angelou never claimed to have written these words. USPS opted to leave the stamp as is, rather than withdraw and reissue it with an Angelou quote.For links to other authors on stamps, please visit Sunday Stamps.

12 comments:

  1. I didn't know all this mess around the stamp. I should confess I had never heard about Angelou before I saw this stamp, that was highly celebrated on Twitter (for instance). And of course I love the quotation, so true! But it's somehow odd they didn't choose a real quotation by the author they are trying to promote...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They basically made a mistake, unfortunately.

      Delete
  2. An appropriate envelope the day after the Women's March. Love the safety pins. Too bad someone at the Bureau of Engraving didn't bother to research the author of the quote and choose something Angelou actually said. Though Maya Angelou as the bird certainly had a song to sing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, a great pity, although the words are certainly evocative of Angelou.

      Delete
  3. Who knew a stamp could create such controversy although I must admit the thought was eclipsed by me laughing at the 'Staples' strip on the envelope.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I feel a little sad for Joan Walsh Anglund - I googled her name and on her Wikipedia page, it basically just includes this stamp story along with her DOB and that she is a poet/author who has sold millions of books. No listing of what else she wrote besides this beautiful quote.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hadn't thought about that - it is rather sad. You can see many of the books she wrote at amazon.com by searching for her name. You should become a wikipedia editor :)

      Delete
  5. I love this stamp, a beautiful picture of a wise woman and a great quote - indeed sad for the original author of the quote, but thanks to your blog we know her name, too!

    And Thom's mail art is wonderful - and important, as Thom has a story to tell / message to share also by this safety pin.
    http://iuoma-network.ning.com/profiles/blogs/thom-courcelle-sends-safety-pins

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a lovely stamp. And thanks for the link.

      Delete
  6. Fine woman and a great quote, even though it wasn't her's. I can see this becoming a quiz question in the future.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha, yes, that seems like a good prediction.

      Delete