Poet, activist and author Giovanni to speak at AU for Black History Month

    AUBURN – Auburn University’s Black Student Union will launch its celebration of Black History Month Friday, Feb. 1 as poet, activist and author Nikki Giovanni talks about her latest book and offers insights on current issues. Giovanni, University Distinguished Professor of English at Virginia Tech, will speak from 7 p.m. – 10 p.m. in the Foy Ballroom.

Giovanni was born in Knoxville, Tenn. and grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio. She graduated with honors from Fisk University in 1968 and pursued post-graduate studies at both the University of Pennsylvania and Columbia University. She launched her career with the publication of her first book, “Black Feeling Black Talk,” in 1968 and a second book shortly thereafter.

Giovanni’s autobiography “Gemini” was a finalist for the National Book Award. Her books “Love Poems,” “Blues: For All the Changes” and “Quilting the Black-Eyed Pea” each were honored with an NAACP Image Award. “Blues: For All the Changes” reached number four on the Los Angeles Times bestseller list.

Giovanni’s children’s picture book “Rosa,” about the civil rights legend Rosa Parks, became a Caldecott Honors book and number three on the New York Times bestseller list. The book’s illustrator, Bryan Collier, received the Coretta Scott King award for best illustration.

The recipient of 25 honorary degrees, Giovanni has been named a Woman of the Year by Mademoiselle Magazine, The Ladies Home Journal and Ebony Magazine. She was the first recipient of the Rosa L. Parks Woman of Courage Award, and she was awarded the Langston Hughes Medal for poetry.

For more information, contact Kiara Pesante at pesankc@auburn.edu .

Contact: Kiara Pesante (pesankc@auburn.edu), or
Mike Clardy, (334) 844-9999 (clardch@auburn.edu)