One of the key things for me about Madame Walker's life is that she really does represent this first generation out of slavery when black people were reinventing themselves, and as a woman who was the first child in her family born free, she was trying to figure out a way, and she moved from Delta, Louisiana.
Madam Walker, as part of the first generation out of slavery, really was inventing the way that she operated in the world.
Growing up in this post-apartheid era, the first generation of teens in South Africa living in this new democracy, I often found myself feeling different. I was often the only person of color in an otherwise all-white school. And within the Indian community, because of my training with an English acting teacher, my accent was very different.
Obviously, I rep Jamaica. I'm a first generation born Jamaican-American. My parents are born and raised in Jamaica, my grandparents are born and raised in Jamaica, my other family still lives in Jamaica, and I still go back there.
We are the first generation of human beings to have substantial insights into the origin of our cosmos and of human life in it.
My father was an immigrant from Russia and my mother was first generation.
The fact is that ours is the first generation that can look disease and extreme poverty in the eye, look across the ocean to Africa, and say this, and mean it. We do not have to stand for this. A whole continent written off - we do not have to stand for this.
I love being Jewish, but I think that our generation is the first generation that crossed that line between being a cultural versus a practicing Jew.
Well, I have a Norwegian father who emigrated to America in the 1950s, and he still speaks with varying degrees of an accent. Over my lifetime my ear has been well-tuned to that accent. Any first generation kid has that wonderful gift from their parents.
No matter who you are, no matter what your color, creed, how you choose to pray or who you choose to love, that if you are an American - first generation or fifth - one who is willing to work hard, play by the rules and apply your God-given talents - that you should be able to find a job that pays the bills.