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During a period of history when women were thought of a the “property” of men, Mae West refused to be bullied into silence and submission by the patriarchal society of American and the Hollywood film industry.  She used her wit, her talent and her sensuality to man-handle the oppression of the age and mold it to her will.  Women (and men) in the Western world owe Mae West a huge thanks for her fearless assault on the stupidity and suppression of society.

Here is a video composite of some of her famous one-liners from a few of her films:

Mary Jane West (August 17, 1893 – November 22, 1980),known as Mae West, was an American actress, playwright, screenwriter and sex symbol whose entertainment career spanned seven decades. Known for her bawdy double entendres, West made a name for herself in vaudeville and on the stage in New York before moving to Hollywood to become a comedienne, actress and writer in the motion picture industry. In consideration of her contributions to American cinema, the American Film Institute named West 15th among the greatest female stars of all time. One of the more controversial movie stars of her day, West encountered many problems, including censorship. When her cinematic career ended, she continued to perform on stage, in Las Vegas, in the United Kingdom, on radio and television, and recorded rock and roll albums.

Mae West was the first of force Hollywood film makers to allow African Americans to be featured in film.  She used her influence to introduce Duke Ellington and His Orchestra in her films.