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30 Powerful Quotes From 30 Powerful Black People

If there was one thing we all can agree on, I think it would be the fact that words can be powerful. They can either tear you down or give you the confidence and strength that you can do any and everything. What you say could very well become the definition of the kind of person you are. With that being said, that’s why I decided to share thirty powerful quotes from black people who are the definition of powerful!

1. “Never be limited by other people’s limited imaginations.” —Dr. Mae Jemison
2. “The cost of liberty is less than the price of repression.” —W.E.B. Du Bois
3. “One day our descendants will think it incredible that we paid so much attention to things like the amount of melanin in our skin or the shape of our eyes or our gender instead of the unique identities of each of us as complex human beings.” —Franklin Thomas
4. “Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.” —Langston Hughes
5. “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.” —Frederick Douglass
6. “Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome while trying to succeed.” —Booker T. Washington
7. “It isn’t where you come from; it’s where you’re going that counts.” —Ella Fitzgerald
8. “You can’t separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom.” —Malcolm X
9. “Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” —Barack Obama
10. “You can only become accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead, pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off you.” —Maya Angelou

You can’t separate peace from freedom because no one can be at peace unless he has his freedom.

– Malcolm x
11. “What’s the world for you if you can’t make it up the way you want it?” —Toni Morrison
12. “Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.” —Harriet Tubman
13. “You are no better than anyone else, and no one is better than you.” —Katherine Johnson
14. “Hold on to your dreams of a better life and stay committed to striving to realize it.” —Earl G. Graves, Sr.
15. “I can accept failure. Everyone fails at something. But I can’t accept not trying.” —Michael Jordan
16. “I am lucky that whatever fear I have inside me, my desire to win is always stronger.” —Serena Williams
17. “Dreams are lovely but they are just dreams. Fleeting, ephemeral, pretty. But dreams do not come true just because you dream them. It’s hard work that makes things happen. It’s hard work that creates change.” —Shonda Rhimes
18. “The thing about black history is that the truth is so much more complex than anything you could make up.” —Henry Louis Gates
19.  “Whatever is bringing you down, get rid of it. Because you’ll find that when you’re free . . . your true self comes out.” —Tina Turner
20. “There are still many causes worth sacrificing for, so much history yet to be made.” —Michelle Obama

Hold on to your dreams of a better life and stay committed to striving to realize it.

—Earl G. Graves, Sr.
21. “If you know whence you came, there is really no limit to where you can go.” —James Baldwin
22. “Freedom is not something that one people can bestow on another as a gift. Thy claim it as their own and none can keep it from them.” —Kwame Nkrumah
23. “There is no vaccine for racism.” —Kamala Harris
24. “Friendly reminder that you don’t have to say the ‘n word’ to be racist. That’s not the sole requirement. Asking people to prove racism is another tool the oppressor uses to marginalize and discredit us.” —Lizzo
25. “History isn’t something you look back at and say it was inevitable, it happens because people make decisions that are sometimes very impulsive and of the moment, but those moments are cumulative realities.” —Marsha P. Johnson
26.” Justice is what love looks like in public.” —Cornel West
27. “None of us is responsible for the complexion of his skin. This fact of nature offers no clue to the character or quality of the person underneath.” —Marian Anderson
28. “I knew then and I know now, when it comes to justice, there is no easy way to get it.” —Claudette Colvin
29.  “Don’t follow the path. Go where there is no path and begin the trail. When you start a new trail equipped with courage, strength and conviction, the only thing that can stop you is you!” —Ruby Bridges
30. “Until the killing of black men, black mothers’ sons, becomes as important to the rest of the country as the killing of a white mother’s sons, we who believe in freedom cannot rest until this happens.” —Ella Baker

There are so many good quotes out there that it’s so hard to narrow them all down, but I would love to know, which quote from this list is your favorite? If you have a favorite that’s not on the list, please share it in the comments!


  1. Number 10 is one of my favorite quotes. I have it on my corkboard by my computer. I see a few on your list I want to add to my board. Thanks for sharing all these amazing quotes.

    • That’s definitely one that when I read it, I completely could relate to. I might have to have that printed out and added to my girl boss vision board! I’m glad to hear I could help you find more quotes to add. Thanks for reading and commenting ♥

  2. I loved “You are no better than anyone else, and no one is better than you.” by Katherine Johnson, if only we could all be a little nicer to one another… it honestly takes nothing, and it means loads.

    • That’s a really good one too. This world for sure needs more kindness in it. The ones who seem to struggle with giving it out need it the most, whether they accept it or not. All we can do is hope that they in turn spread the kindness that they’re given. Thanks for reading and commenting ♥

    • Absolutely! I think because it’s just so real. Thank you so much Abigail! I’m so glad to see that you’re enjoying my blog. I’m glad you came across it as well! Welcome and thanks for being here ♥

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