Robin Morgan

1942 –

Robin Morgan was born on January 29, 1942, in Lake Worth, Florida, and grew up in Mount Vernon, New York. At a young age, she began working as a child model, and by 1945 she had her own radio show, The Little Robin Morgan Show, and was a regular on the television and radio show Juvenile Jury. At the age of seven, Morgan became a household name when she was cast in the television series Mama. For the next seven years, she stayed with the Mama series and continued acting steadily in other television shows and one film.

At the age of fourteen, Morgan decided to change her focus to writing, her first passion. She graduated from the Wetter School in Mount Vernon in 1956 and was tutored from 1956 to 1959, because her mother refused to let her go away to college. She took classes at Columbia University, nonmatriculating, and at the age of seventeen, she began publishing her poetry in literary magazines. During the 1960s, she worked as a literary agent and freelance editor in New York City.

A notable human rights activist and leader in the international feminist movement, Morgan was active in CORE (Congress on Racial Equality), SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee), and the anti-Vietnam War movement, and was a founding member of the radical feminist organizations New York Radical Women and W.I.T.C.H. She is also cofounder, with the late Simone de Beauvoir, and president of The Sisterhood Is Global Institute and cofounder, with Jane Fonda and Gloria Steinem, of the Women’s Media Center. From 1989 to 1994 she also served as editor-in-chief of Ms. Magazine.

An author of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction, Morgan has published more than twenty books. Morgan’s poetry collections include A Hot January: Poems 1996–1999 (W. W. Norton, 1999), Depth Perception: New Poems and a Masque (Doubleday, 1994), Upstairs in the Garden: Poems Selected and New 1968–1988 (W. W. Norton, 1990), Lady of the Beasts (Random House, 1976), and Monster (Random House, 1972).

Of A Hot January: Poems 1996–1999, Alice Walker writes, “Morgan proves that exquisite poetry can be the most surprising gift of grief. A volume as proud, fierce, vulnerable, and brave as the poet herself.”

Morgan has spoken at major universities across North America and has traveled across the world, working as an organizer, lecturer, and journalist. She is the recipient of a National Endowment of the Arts grant for her poetry, and in 1992 she was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the University of Connecticut at Storrs. She is currently the writer, producer, and host of the weekly radio and online webcast and podcast program Women’s Media Center Live with Robin Morgan. She lives in New York City.