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Wangari Maathai

Kirsty Young's castaway is campaigner Wangari Maathai.

Kirsty Young's castaway this week is the environmentalist and human rights campaigner Wangari Maathai. Known these days as 'Africa's Forest Goddess' for her pioneering work fighting soil erosion and poverty across the continent, she's united her passion for the power of nature with a crusade for political justice.

Born the third of six children in the central highlands of Kenya, the family home was a traditional mud-walled house with no electricity or running water. From there, her journey has been extraordinary - she won a scholarship to America, became a professor and launched the Greenbelt Movement which has educated and encouraged African women to plant millions of trees. She has campaigned against the erosion of human rights in Kenya and in 2004 she became the first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize.

[Taken from the original programme material for this archive edition of Desert Island Discs]

Favourite track: I Can't Complain by Patti LaBelle
Book: The Koran
Luxury: A huge basket of fruit.

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Sun 1 Jul 2007 11:15

Music Played

  • Eric Wainaima

    Ritwa Riaku

    • Sawa Sawa.
  • Harry Belafonte


    • All Time Greatest Hits Vol 1.
    • RCA.
  • Angélique Kidjo


    • Angelique Kidjo: Logozo.
    • Mango.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Patti LaBelle

      I Can't Complain

      • Be Yourself.
      • MCA.
  • Joan Baez

    We Shall Overcome

    • Joan Baez: In Concert Part 2.
    • Vanguard.
  • Miriam Makeba

    Eyes on Tomorrow

    • Miriam Makeba: Eyes on Tomorrow.
    • Polydor.
  • Frank Sinatra

    Moon River

    • My Way.
    • Reprise.
  • All Angels

    Ave Maria

    • All Angels.
    • Universal Classics.
  • Book Choice

    • The Koran

  • Luxury Choice

    • A huge basket of fruit


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Wangari Maathai


  • Sun 1 Jul 2007 11:15

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