Writer Roxane Gay Draws Huge Crowd on Campus

Roxane Gay at Bowdoin Monday night

Roxane Gay, cultural critic, bestselling author, professor, and very funny speaker and Twitterer, visited campus Monday night. Some reported the crowd as the largest here in recent memory for a visiting speaker.

 

After Associate Dean of Students for Diversity and Inclusion Leana Amaez introduced Gay and the two moderators — professors Jen Scanlon (Bowdoin’s William R. Kenan Professor of the Humanities in Gender, Sexuality, and Women’s Studies) and Judith Casselberry (Associate Professor of Africana Studies) — Gay read two excerpts from her new memoir, Hunger, and then took questions.

She spoke — among other topics — about her inspiration to write, the life-changing high school teacher who supported her creativity, her horrifying sexual assault at age 12, her delightful relationships with her students at Purdue University, her epic procrastination techniques, her interactions with fans, and her work on Marvel’s Black Panther: World of Wakanda comic.

 

The evening was part of Bowdoin’s celebration of Women’s History Month, and helps to set up two upcoming community reads of Gay’s book, Bad Feminist — one for students and one for faculty and staff. The discussion for students will be Wednesday, March 28, at 4 p.m., in the SWAG Center at 24 College Street. To sign up students can email SWAG@bowdoin.edu. The faculty and staff women’s book discussion will also be that Wednesday, at noon for lunch in Daggett Lounge. Email acliffor@bowdoin.edu.

Photos by Michele Stapleton

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