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Roxane Gay

Roxane Gay is the author of the essay collection Bad Feminist (Harper Perennial, 2014), the title essay of which appeared in VQR; the novel An Untamed State (Black Cat, 2014); and Ayiti (Artistically Declined Press, 2011). Her writing has appeared in Best American Mystery StoriesBest American Short StoriesBest Sex WritingA Public SpaceMcSweeney’sTin HouseOxford American, the New York Times Book ReviewBookforumTime, the Nation, the Rumpus, and Salon, among others. She is the coeditor of PANK.


Hank Willis Thomas, 'Raise Up,' 2014. Bronze, 112.2 X 9.84". (Courtesy of the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, NY.)

The Price of Black Ambition

Fall 2014 | Essays

I have come to realize how much I have, throughout my life, bought into the narrative of this alluring myth of personal responsibility and excellence. I realize how much I believe that all good things will come if I—if we—just work hard enough. This attitude leaves me always relentless, always working hard enough and then harder still.

Bad Feminist

Fall 2012 | Essays

The most significant problem with essential feminism is how it doesn’t allow for the complexities of human experience or individuality. There seems to be little room for multiple or discordant points of view.