Nikki Giovanni Poetry: American Poets Analysis - Essay

Nikki Giovanni Poetry: American Poets Analysis

(Poets and Poetry in America)

From the beginning of her career, Nikki Giovanni has combined private with public concerns, and her development has been toward the exploration of the inner life of one black female—herself—as a paradigm for black women’s aspirations in contemporary America. An individualist who early admired Ayn Rand’s concept of rational self-interest, Giovanni has a unique black identity. Her example of self-actualization embodied in her poetry has been not only influential but also inspirational, especially to black youth.

In The Souls of Black Folk (1903), W. E. B. Du Bois expressed the dilemma of the black American writer—a double consciousness of being both an American and a black. Giovanni, however, has never...

(The entire section is 4171 words.)