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Nikki Giovanni


African-American poet, author, and professor known for Bicycles: Like Poems; Cotton Chocolate on the Rainy Time; and Dark Judgement. She also composed many children’s books, including Spin a Soft Dark Song and SUNLIGHT is So Calm. She went to Fisk School, the School of Pa, and Columbia School. She was teaching innovative composing at Virginia Technology in 2007, when the Apr 16 campus massacre happened. Her phrases, “We are Virginia Technology…We will prevail,” became a rallying cry for traumatized learners. She was created in Tennessee, and she was raised in Ohio. She’s a son called Thomas. The Country wide Public Radio plan, WITH THAT SAID, commissioned Giovanni to create a poem for this year’s 2009 inauguration of Leader Barack Obama.

Quick Facts

Full Name Nikki Giovanni
Date Of Birth June 7, 1943
Place Of Birth Knoxville, TN
Profession Poet
Education University of Pennsylvania, Fisk University, Columbia University
Nationality American
Children Thomas Watson Giovanni
Parents Jones "Gus" Giovann, Yolande Cornelia, Sr.
Siblings Gary Giovanni
Awards American Book Award, NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work, Fiction, NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work - Poetry
Nominations National Book Award for Biography
Movies Maya Angelou: And Still I Rise
Star Sign Gemini

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1She is a creative writing professor at the Virginia Polytechnic University at Blacksburg, Virginia. [July 2007]
2On April 17, 2007, delivered a profoundly moving poem entitled "We are Virginia Tech" at the Convocation ceremony commemorating the massacre on the Virginia Tech campus just one day earlier.
3Biography/bibliography in: "Contemporary Authors". New Revision Series, Vol. 130, pp. 161-171. Farmington Hills, MI: Thomson Gale, 2005.
4An honorary member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.



The Poets' Cafe1995TV SeriesGuest



Mr. SOUL!2018DocumentaryHerself
The Amazing Nina Simone2015DocumentaryHerself
BET Awards 2014: Genius Talks2014TV SpecialHerself
Tavis Smiley2007-2014TV SeriesHerself - Guest / Herself
Democracy Now!2012-2013TV SeriesHerself
Get Real! Wise Women Speak2011DocumentaryHerself
Tupac Shakur: Thug Angel 22011DocumentaryHerself
What Ever Happened to Hip Hop?2009DocumentaryHerself
Appalachia: A History of Mountains and People2009TV Mini-Series documentaryHerself, Writer and Activist
Number One with a Bullet2008DocumentaryHerself
Say It Loud2008TV Movie documentaryHerself
Legends Ball2006TV Movie documentaryHerself
Def Poetry2002-2005TV Series documentaryHerself
An Evening with Nikki Giovanni2005TV MovieHerself - Interviewee
The History Makers2005Video documentaryHerself
Furious Flower: A Video Anthology of African American Poetry 1960-951998Video documentaryHerself (Volume II: Warriors)
Tell About the South: Voices in Black and White1998TV Movie documentaryHerself
27th NAACP Image Awards1996TV SpecialHerself
Spirit to Spirit: The Poetry of Nikki Giovanni1986TV MovieHerself
The Mike Douglas Show1974-1975TV SeriesHerself - Poet / Activist
Chester Himes, Reflections1972TV Movie documentaryHerself
The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson1972TV SeriesHerself
Black Journal1969TV SeriesHerself

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1On writing: If everybody became a poet the world would be much better. We would all read to each other.
2On self-respect: Follow your image as far as you can no matter how useless you think it is. Push yourself.

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