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Rigoberta Menchú Tum

Born in 1959 to a family of Quiché Maya peasants, at a very early age Rigoberta Menchú Tum became involved in social reform activities. As a teenager, she became prominent in the women's rights movement. When her father, an indigenous leader, was killed, she took up his work of educating the peasants and organizing resistance to genocidal military oppression. Her book, I, Rigoberta Menchú, an Indian Woman in Guatemala, provides a window into the culture and worldview of the Maya people, and the depth of their suffering.

In 1992, when Rigoberta Menchú Tum was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, a Maya woman at last gained world attention for her people.

See Also: The Nobel Peace Prize 1992

Photo copyright © The Nobel Foundation

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