Margaret Mead was an American anthropologist who mainly focused her studies and research on child rearing, personality, and culture.

During her career, Mead was also a renowned speaker, famous for her bold lectures on controversial social issues. In two of her major works, Mead says that male and female personality characteristics are not necessarily determined by heredity, but by society and cultural conditioning.

Another study that sparked controversy and a lot of criticism, approached the attitudes towards sex in three primitive societies; Mead’s reports on this subject had a major impact on the 1960s sexual revolution.i

A daring, independent woman who was not afraid to explore and talk about taboo topics, Margaret Mead remains a model and a teacher for all those willing to learn and challenge the status quo.

Here are 11 Margaret Mead quotes to make you see that change starts with you:


Children must be taught how to think, not what to think.

Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else.

Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.


It is utterly false and cruelly arbitrary to put all the play and learning into childhood, all the work into middle age, and all the regrets into old age.

I measure success in terms of the contributions an individual makes to her fellow human beings.

Never ever depend on governments or institutions to solve any major problems. All social change comes from the passion of individuals.

Even though the ship may go down, the journey goes on.

The notion that we are products of our environment is our greatest sin; we are products of our choices.

One of the oldest human needs is having someone to wonder where you are when you don’t come home at night.

You know my fury about people is based precisely on the fact that I consider them to be responsible, moral creatures who so often do not act that way.

What I am demanding of other people is what I am demanding of myself.