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There are many things about pop culture that would be different if these African American women never stepped on stage. From dance moves to fashion trends to chart-topping hits, these women impacted pop culture on a global scale!

1. Whitney Houston


Photo Credit: Splash

Born in Newark, New Jersey on August 9, 1963, Whitney Houston became a chart-topping singer at the tender age of 22. Her album second album, Whitney (1987) contained number one hits like "I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)", "Didn't We Almost Have It All," and "So Emotional". She won a Grammy for the album, but eventually fell off track after meeting singer Bobby Brown in 1992. Luckily, the star and legendary diva made a comeback in 2009 with the song titled “I Look to You”. The singer tragically passed away on February 11, 2012.

2. Iman


Photo Credit: Splash

Born on July 25, 1955 in Mogadishu, Somalia, Iman Abdulmajid has made a significant contribution to the world of modeling. Her mother named Iman after the Muslim word for hope with the intention that it would protect her daughter from the challenges of growing up as a female in the Middle East. While attending the University of Nairobi, she was discovered by the well-known photographer Peter Beard, and has since then been photographed in the front pages of Vogue and Harper's Bazaar. She has retired from modeling but works as the CEO for a cosmetics collection and is married to David Bowie.

3. Beyonce


Photo Credit: Splash

In one word, Beyonce can be described as bootylicious. From her fabulous dance moves and her well-known marriage to rapper Jay-Z, this singer and songwriter is known for top singles like “Drunk in Love”, “Singe Ladies (Put a Ring on it)” and previous work with girl-group powerhouse Destiny's Child. Born on Sept. 4, 1981 in Houston, Texas, this star is still producing singles and posting iconic pictures on Instagram.

4. Angela Davis


Photo Credit: The Red List 

Born as Angela Yvonne Davis on January 26, 1944, this African American woman has been recognized for her political activism during the Civil Rights Movement. During the 1960's, Davis became a leader in the Communist Party USA, and had ties with the Black Panther Party. After being tried and acquitted on charges of conspiracy in the 1970 armed take-over of a Marin County courtroom, Davis became a college professor at the University of California and taught classes on feminism. 

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