Are you looking for the best Pauli Murray quotes? I’ve rounded up some of the famous Pauli Murray quotes, sayings, captions for Instagram, and status messages for you.

Pauli Murray was a lawyer, women’s rights activist, Episcopal priest, and novelist in addition to being a civil rights activist.

Murray went to Hunter College and worked a variety of jobs to pay for her education. After the Wall Street Crash, Murray was forced to drop out of school, making it difficult for her to find job.

After the Episcopal Church modified its position, Pauli Murray became the first African American woman to be ordained as an Episcopal priest in the United States in 1977.

Pauli Murray died of cancer on July 1, 1985, in Pittsburgh.

You will find below a curated collection of popular Pauli Murray quotes to read and share with others.


Best Pauli Murray Quotes

If anyone should ask a Negro woman in America what has been her greatest achievement, her honest answer would be, ‘I survived!’ ~ Pauli Murray.

What is often called exceptional ability is nothing more than persistent endeavor. ~ Pauli Murray.

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Don’t get mad, get smart. ~ Pauli Murray.

In January 1973, Murray lost Barlow to cancer. By September, she had resigned from Brandeis University and entered the General Theological Seminary. The year after she earned her Master of Divinity degree, she became the first African-American woman to be ordained an Episcopal priest. ~ Pauli Murray.

Pauli Murray was an amazing woman who accomplished a lot in her life. She was born in 1910 and grew up to become a lawyer, civil rights activist, and author.

She was the first African American woman to graduate from Yale Law School and the first to be ordained as an Episcopal priest.

The lesson of history that all human rights are indivisible and that the failure to adhere to this principle jeopardizes the rights of all is particularly applicable here. A built-in hazard of an aggressive ethnocentric movement which disregards the interests of other disadvantaged groups is that it will become parochial and ultimately self-defeating in the face of hostile reactions, dwindling allies, and mounting frustrations…Only a broad movement for human rights can prevent the Black Revolution from becoming isolated and can insure ultimate success. ~ Pauli Murray.

When my brothers try to draw a circle to exclude me, I shall draw a larger circle to include them. Where they speak out for the privileges of a puny group, I shall shout for the rights of all mankind. ~ Pauli Murray.

I intend to destroy segregation by positive and embracing methods(…) When my brothers try to draw a circle to exclude me, I shall draw a larger circle to include them. Where they speak out for the privileges of a puny group, I shall shout for the rights of all mankind. ~ Pauli Murray.

True community is based on upon equality, mutuality, and reciprocity. It affirms the richness of individual diversity as well as the common human ties that bind us together. ~ Pauli Murray.

Top Pauli Murray Quotes

Pauli Murray was an important person in the civil rights movement. She fought for equality for all people, no matter what their skin color or gender was. 

She helped to write the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which made it illegal to discriminate against someone because of their race or gender. She was a very brave and determined woman, and her work has had a huge impact on our society today.

And while I could not always suppress the violent thoughts that raged inside me, I would nevertheless dedicate my life to seeking alternatives to physical violence, and would wrestle continually with the problem of transforming psychic violence into creative energy. ~ Pauli Murray.

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Hope is a song in a weary throat. ~ Pauli Murray.

According to Aunt Pauline, my godmother and my mother’s oldest sister, who later adopted me, I entered the world during a stormy period in my parents’ lives. Before I was conceived, my mother and father had had one of their brief but periodic separations. My mother had fled to her parents’ home in Durham, North Carolina, where her family urged her to seek a divorce. She had returned to Baltimore with that intention, or so her family thought. Instead, there was a passionate reunion between my parents, and I, not a divorce, was the result. ~ Pauli Murray.

In not a single one of these little campaigns was I victorious. In other words, in each case, I personally failed, but I have lived to see the thesis upon which I was operating vindicated. And what I very often say is that I’ve lived to see my lost causes found. ~ Pauli Murray.


Here is a trailer of My Name is Pauli Murray for you to watch.


So these were 13 top Pauli Murray quotes and sayings.

Tell me in the comments section, which Pauli Murray quotes were your favorite?

If you like these quotes and sayings, then you can also read my other posts on Adyashanti quotes and John Donne quotes.

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Facts about Pauli Murray

  • Murray was born on November 20, 1910, in Baltimore, Maryland.
  • Murray wrote States’ Laws on Race and Color in 1950, which examined and critiqued state segregation laws across the country.
  • Murray was named to the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women by US President John F. Kennedy in 1961.
  • Pauli was the first African-American to graduate from Yale Law School with a JSD degree in 1965.
  • She was one of the founding members of the National Organization for Women (NOW) in 1966.
  • Murray left academics in 1973 to pursue activities related to the Episcopal Church.
  • Murray was an ardent civil rights activist who stood alongside Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks at the forefront of the civil rights movement.
  • Pauli’s most intense love connections were with women, and he struggled with gender identification.
  • Murray coined the term Jane Crow to express her conviction that Jim Crow policies were also harmful to African-American women.
  • Pauli’s life exemplifies bravery, perseverance, and dedication in the quest of a more fair society.
  • Pauli Murray was a powerful campaigner for civil rights and women’s rights.
  • Pauli Murray died of pancreatic cancer in the residence on July 1, 1985.