Watch Nikki Giovanni perform “Ego Tripping” on Melissa Harris-Perry

Watch award-winning poet and activist Nikki Giovanni perform her poem “Ego Tripping” on Melissa Harris-Perry’s show this weekend.

Nikki Giovanni, the “Princess of Black Poetry,”  published Black Feeling, Black Talk, her first collection of poetry, in 1968. Over 45 years, she has written over 30 books, was a finalist for the National Book Award, and won the Rosa Parks Woman of Courage Award and the Langston Hughes Medal for poetry. Giovanni is a university distinguished professor at Virginia Tech. (In 2007, she threatened that she would resign if the administration didn’t remove a disruptive student from her class. His name was Seung-Hui Cho, and he would go on to kill 32 students at Virginia Tech before shooting himself.)

You can also catch Giovanni talking about her new book, gun violence, her Thug Life tattoo, and the search for the world’s best beer on Democracy Now!


Born and raised on the mean streets of New York City’s Upper West Side, Katie Halper is a comic, writer, blogger, satirist and filmmaker based in New York. Katie graduated from The Dalton School (where she teaches history) and Wesleyan University (where she learned that labels are for jars.) A director of Living Liberally and co-founder/performer in Laughing Liberally, Katie has performed at Town Hall, Symphony Space, The Culture Project, D.C. Comedy Festival, all five Netroots Nations, and The Nation Magazine Cruise, where she made Howard Dean laugh! and has appeared with Lizz Winstead, Markos Moulitsas, The Yes Men, Cynthia Nixon and Jim Hightower. Her writing and videos have appeared in The New York Times, Comedy Central, The Nation Magazine, Gawker, Nerve, Jezebel, the Huffington Post, Alternet and Katie has been featured in/on NY Magazine, LA Times, In These Times, Gawker,Jezebel, MSNBC, Air America, GritTV, the Alan Colmes Show, Sirius radio (which hung up on her once) and the National Review, which called Katie “cute and some what brainy.” Katie co-produced Tim Robbins’s film Embedded, (Venice Film Festival, Sundance Channel); Estela Bravo’s Free to Fly (Havana Film Festival, LA Latino Film Festival); was outreach director for The Take, Naomi Klein/Avi Lewis documentary about Argentine workers (Toronto & Venice Film Festivals, Film Forum); co-directed New Yorkers Remember the Spanish Civil War, a video for Museum of the City of NY exhibit, and wrote/directed viral satiric videos including Jews/ Women/ Gays for McCain.

Katie is a writer, comedian, filmmaker, and New Yorker.

Read more about Katie

Join the Conversation