Serena Williams Gets Candid With Common in Interview On Race, Gender, and Fame

When it comes to MAKER Serena Williams, there is seemingly nothing she cannot do. From her impeccable strength and talent both on and off the court, to her beauty, wisdom, and benevolence, Williams has been an inspiration to all who have been fortunate enough to watch her play.

When she sat down for an interview with longtime friend, Common, the conversation became candid. "The Undefeated in Depth: Serena with Common" debuted as a special on ESPN on Dec. 18, highlighting important topics like race, gender, and fame.

Here are some of Williams' best quotes from the interview:
• "When I started out, I never thought, 'I want to open up doors for black athletes,' and then to female athletes. I ended up on this path and people started looking up to me and it was different, because I was like, I'm just doing me.’ And people were starting to appreciate it; I was, like, 'Wow, OK, that’s kind of cool.'" —Serena Williams
• "I believe that God never gives you more than what you can handle, and for me, I'm not carrying it alone. I embrace it." —Serena Williams
• "[My parents] always wanted us to be proud of who we are and who we were. A lot of black people, unfortunately, especially growing up, are discouraged, like, 'You don't look good' or 'Your hair is not pretty' or 'Your skin's too dark.' We were always told to love ourselves. My dad always said you have to know your history, and if you know your past, you can have a great future." —Serena Williams
• "I wouldn't want to be any other color... I’m really proud to wear this color every single day of my life." —Serena Williams
• "I think if I were a man, I would have been in that conversation a long time ago. I think being a woman is just a whole new set of problems from society that you have to deal with, as well as being black, so it’s a lot to deal with — and especially lately. I’ve been able to speak up for women’s rights because I think that gets lost in color, or gets lost in cultures. Women make up so much of this world, and, yeah, if I were a man, I would have 100 percent been considered the greatest ever a long time ago." —Serena Williams
• "I totally embrace who I am and what I am." —Serena Williams

Watch the full interview in the video player below and don't forget to check out Williams' exclusive MAKERS video in the player above.

NEXT: 4 Pieces of Advice Serena Williams Hopes Every Incredible Woman Will Heed »

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Photo Credit: Marco Piraccini\Archivio Marco Piraccini/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images