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Two-time New York Times bestselling writer Roxane Gay joins MFA students in Calarts’s Creative Writing Program as the 2018 Katie Jacobson Writer-in-Residence

Two-time New York Times bestselling writer Roxane Gay joins MFA students in Calarts’s Creative Writing Program as the 2018 Katie Jacobson Writer-in-Residence

Valencia, CA, March 28—Roxane Gay, one of the most sought-after writers of our current moment, has been selected as the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) 2018 Katie Jacobson Writer-in-Residence. Gay will conduct workshops with CalArts students in the MFA Creative Writing Program in the School of Critical Studies and present a public reading on the CalArts campus on Tuesday, April 10, 2018 at 7 pm.

"With her sharp attention to feminism, race and culture, Roxane Gay is one of the most sought-after and listened-to writers in the nation right now,” said Tisa Bryant, director of CalArts’s MFA Creative Writing Program. “Having her at CalArts as our 2018 Katie Jacobson Writer in Residence, and bringing these critical conversations into our creative work, especially at this nexus of Black Lives Matter and #metoo, is utterly important and future-forward.”

Gay, an award-winning novelist, essayist, and editor, became a critical and popular sensation following the release of her 2014 essay collection, Bad Feminist. Last year saw the release of two new books by Gay, the nationally bestselling short-story collection Difficult Women and the New York Times bestselling memoir Hunger, which takes her own emotional and psychological struggles as a point of entry into collective and cultural understandings and anxieties surrounding body image, consumption, health, and pleasure.

“Roxane’s impactful trajectory in the arts is a great example of the kind of work we hold in such esteem in our program, in multiple genres, and with an eye for making space for new writers through editing and teaching,” Bryant said.

A contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, Gay is also the editor of the forthcoming anthology Best American Short Stories 2018 and the author of the Black Panther superhero title, World of Wakanda, for Marvel. Her writing appears in Best American Mystery Stories 2014, Best American Short Stories 2012, Best Sex Writing 2012, Harper’s Bazaar, A Public Space, McSweeney’s, Tin House, Oxford American, American Short Fiction, and Virginia Quarterly Review. She has several books in development as well as projects for television and film.

A vital feature of the Creative Writing Program, the Katie Jacobson residency was created by the Jacobson family and friends, in memory of alumna Katie Jacobson. The program offers a unique opportunity for students to gain hitherto unprecedented access to leaders in their field, to discuss professional working methods, and to receive feedback on their own work. The program launched with the residency of short-fiction writer and translator Lydia Davis. The Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Junot Díaz was CalArts 2017 Writer-in-Residence. 

What :

Roxane Gay, 2018 Katie Jacobson Writer-in-Residence at CalArts, will read from her work at California Institute of the Arts (CalArts)

When :

Tuesday, April 10 at 7 pm

Where :

The Generator Building, rooms 201 and 202, on the CalArts campus, 24700 McBean Parkway, Valencia, CA 91355-2340.

Admission :


CalArts’ School of Critical Studies brings together internationally recognized writers, poets, scholars and thinkers working in both new and traditional forms across a wide variety of disciplines, extending from narrative fiction, performance and multimedia to cultural criticism and political theory. The school offers two graduate programs: the Master of Fine Arts Creative Writing Program and the Master of Arts Aesthetics and Politics Program. In both programs, the expertise of Institute faculty is complemented with an extensive series of readings, lectures, workshops and longer-term residencies by a diverse range of visiting writers, theorists and artists.

California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) has set the pace for educating professional artists since 1970. Offering rigorous undergraduate and graduate degree programs through six schools—Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, and Theater—CalArts has championed creative excellence, critical reflection, and the development of new forms and expressions. As successive generations of faculty and alumni have helped shape the landscape of contemporary arts, the Institute first envisioned by Walt Disney encompasses a vibrant, eclectic community with global reach, inviting experimentation, independent inquiry, and active collaboration and exchange among artists, artistic disciplines and cultural traditions.