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Oprah's hero journey
Transcript of Oprah's hero journey
The Oprah Winfrey Show
The hero begins to undergo challenges, often with the help of a mentor. This process helps the hero to become aware of his strengths and weaknesses and realize what is necessary to complete the journey.
Early Life and Initiation
Departure-The hero leaves the known world (figuratively or literally) to enter the unknown world of adventure.
RETURN- The hero returns home (figuratively or literally) and is changed by the process of the journey. Usually the return is with “a gift” (again figurative or literal) that helps her community.
Return- How she has changed and helped others
-Oprah has awarded hundreds of grants to organizations that support the education and empowerment of women, children and families in the United States and around the world. Amongst her various philanthropic contributions,
-She has donated millions of dollars toward providing a better education for students who have merit but no means.
Return- How she has changed to help herself
-Juju Chang says after an interview with Oprah, "“She said she now understands the trials and tribulations, as well as the joys, of motherhood.”
-After all the experiences she suffered as a child inspired her need to empathize with people in her daily life.
-She says, “'I don’t believe you can go through adversity without believing in a power greater than yourself. Some may call is God”
At age 17, Winfrey won the Miss Black Tennessee beauty pageant.
-Personal stance: When her boss would not pay her workers more money because they were girls, she took the risky step of making her own studio (Harper Studios 1988) to take control and decide who gets what paycheck. -It would soon be the highest rated talk show in history
She was originally named Orpah after a woman from the "Book of Ruth" but a spelling mistake on the birth certificate changed it to Oprah.
Oprah Gail Winfrey
Oprah gives back to the community in various ways:
•Oprah Winfrey Foundation
•Oprah Angel foundation
• Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls
-criticized for unleashing confession culture
-promoting controversial self help ideas
-emotion centered approach.
-praised for overcoming adversity to become a benefactor
-knew she was destined for greatness.
Her show was popular because...
-she shared her personal life
-she made public her past abuse, her drug problem during her '20s, and her struggle with obesity.
Oprah became the richest self-made woman in America and the wealthiest black women in the US.
She realized that because of her difficult childhood, she deserved to make a better life for herself and a better life for others in bad situations
-Oprah Gail Winfrey was born on January 29th, 1954, in Kosciusko, Mississippi
-Born into poverty
-Born to two unwed parents, Vernita Lee and Vernon Winfrey
-Oprah refers to her youth and childhood as being an abused young girl who grew up in terrible conditions, in the racially torn Deep South
-Her imaginative mind enabled her to include her only friends (farm animals) in her made up games (the good of this was that she realized the strength of having an imaginative mind
-She was brutally raped at age nine by her 19 year old cousin when he was baby sitting
-She was repetitively molested by her cousin, uncle, and mother’s boyfriend, between the ages of 10 and 14
-She never told anyone about the sexual abuse, because she was forced to swear herself to secrecy
-She ran away from home between the ages of 13 and 14
-In her early teens, she was involved with sex and drugs
-She became pregnant at age 14, but her baby boy died prematurely
-Oprah took the death of her baby as a second chance at life
Oprah Winfrey is a Hero to millions
-She now believes that education is the door to freedom, offering a chance at a brighter future
When this baby died,
my father said to me,
“This is your second chance”
-Oprah's mother sent her to live with her father in Tennessee at age 13.
-Oprah attended Nashville East High School.
-She left her known world and entered the unknown world, where she began new and exciting jobs and new adventures.
-Oprah's first job as a teen was at a local grocery store.
-She attracted the attention of the local black radio station, WVOL, which hired her to do the news part-time.
-Her dad was her mentor, as well as her grandmother.
-Oprah entered a public speaking contest where she won the grand prize of a scholarship to Tennessee State University.
-She attended Tennessee State University, majoring in Speech Communications and Performing Arts.
-She was both the youngest and first black female news anchor at Nashville's WLAC-TV.
-Oprah moved to Baltimore's WJZ-TV in 1976 to co-anchor the six o'clock news.
-She was recruited to join Richard Sher as co-host of WJZ's local talk show People Are Talking.
-In 1983, Winfrey relocated to Chicago to host WLS-TV's low-rated morning talk show and within months after Winfrey took over, the ratings rose significantly.-The movie critic Roger Ebert persuaded her to sign a syndication deal with King World. It was renamed The Oprah Winfrey Show and broadcasted nationally beginning September 8, 1986.
By: Sasha Dymant,
"I know what it means to be poor," Oprah says.
"I know what it feels like to be abandoned.
I know what it feels like to not be wanted.
I know what it feels like to not be loved...
and yet have inside yourself a yearning,
a passion, a desire, a hope for something
-The Oprah Winfrey show is a American television talk show starring Oprah Winfrey.
-It aired nationally for 25 seasons, from 1986-2011. It was used teach and inspire viewers by providing uplifting experiences, featured many book clubs, famous interviews, and self-improvement.
-For example, on February 10, 1993,
-Winfrey sat down with Michael Jackson for what would become the most-watched interview in television history.
-Some others interviews I included was Ellen Degeneres coming out, an interview with a lady who got attacked by an ape, and many other more compelling and heart-breaking ones.
"Oprah has long believed that
education is the door to freedom,
offering a chance at a brighter future".
-Raised by her deeply religious grandmother (Hattie Mae), and lived on her farm until the age of six
-Her grandmother taught her how to read and write before the age of three, and took her to church very often
-Lived with her extremely non supportive, 18 year old mother, who was a housemaid at the time
-Her mother often left Oprah home alone at an early age, and paid her no attention, prompting Oprah to misbehave
-Lived with her 20 year old father who had been in the army, and provided her with stability
-Lived in economically troubled neighborhoods
“It's not that I've always known who I would be. It was just very clear to me from an early age who I wouldn't be."
If you have ever lived your childhood, you
would know that Oprah was very popular in the Nick
series "Drake and Josh", even though she never
appeared on set.
Departure- Beginning of her Career
Oprah received an Oscar nomination for
Best Supporting Actress with her film
debut as Sofia in Steven Spielberg's
The Color Purple (1985) In 1989, she
executive-produced and starred in
Donna Deitch's acclaimed television movie The Women of Brewster Place.
Would Oprah be as successful as she is
today, without her horrendous past
Was it fair that Oprah used her emotional
and abusive past to advance in her career?
How has Oprah's success inspired children and
teens (with similarly difficult childhoods) to
take control of their future?