In Conversation: Roxane Gay & Channing Gerard Joseph

Join writer, editor, educator, and social commentator Roxane Gay, author of the New York Times-bestselling essay collection Bad Feminist and the novel An Untamed State, for what’s sure to be […]


In Conversation: Roxane Gay & Channing Gerard Joseph

Authors:Channing Gerard Joseph, Roxane Gay, M.J. Fievre


Join writer, editor, educator, and social commentator Roxane Gay, author of the New York Times-bestselling essay collection Bad Feminist and the novel An Untamed State, for what’s sure to be an insightful and sharply focused discussion of her work, cultural touch points and personal views. She’s speaking with award-winning journalist and LGBTQ advocate Channing Gerard Joseph, who is also a professor at University of Southern California’s Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Joseph is currently researching the forthcoming biography, House of Swann: Where Slaves Became Queens, the story of former slave William Dorsey Swann, the world’s first self-described “drag queen” and a progenitor of ballroom culture. He is working with Oscar-nominated director Lee Daniels to adapt Swann’s story into a major motion picture.

Introduced by M.J. Fievre

Sponsored by

and in partnership with

Channing Gerard Joseph

Journalist Channing Gerard Joseph is the author of the biography, House of Swann: Where Slaves Became Queens (Crown/Picador, 2021), which tells the true story of William Dorsey Swann, a former slave who became the world’s first self-described “drag queen” and leader of possibly the world’s earliest gay liberation organization. Joseph is a former staff writer and editor at The New York Times and the Associated Press, and he was the first African-American editor of San Francisco’s SF Weekly. His articles have been published by The New York TimesThe AtlanticThe Washington PostThe GuardianEntertainment Weekly, MTV News, and many others. 

Roxane Gay

Roxane Gay is a writer, editor, educator, and social commentator. She is the author of the essay collection Bad Feminist, which was a New York Times bestseller; the novel An Untamed State, and the short story collections Difficult Women and Ayiti. Her fiction has also been selected for The Best American Short Stories 2012, The Best American Mystery Stories 2014, and other anthologies. She is also the author of World of Wakanda for Marvel. She is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times and has also written for Time, McSweeney’s, the Virginia Quarterly Review, The Guardian and the Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Rumpus, Bookforum, and Salon.

M.J. Fievre

M.J. Fievre was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and moved to the United States in 2002. M.J.’s publishing career began as a teenager in Haiti with the Young Adult book La Statuette Maléfique. Since then, M.J. has authored nine books in French that are widely read in Europe and the French Antilles. Her titles include I Am Riding, her first children’s book, written in English, French, and Haitian Creole; A Sky the Color of Chaos, a memoir; and Raising Confident Black Kids, Happy, Okay?: Poems about Anxiety, Depression, Hope, and Survival. She is also a long-time educator and frequent keynote speaker. In Badass Black Girl: Questions, Quotes, and Affirmations for Teens (Mango) M.J. explores the many facets of identity through a number of big and small questions including family and friends, school and careers, body image, and stereotypes in this journal designed for teenage girls. She calls for embracing authenticity and celebrating who you are, so here’s a journal designed to help readers nurture their creativity, self-motivation, and positive self-awareness. This journal celebrates girl power and honors the strength and spirit of black girls. It provides words of encouragement that seek not just to inspire, but to ignite discussion and debate about the world. Mary Cowper, in the Midwest Book Review, noted that “Finding the courage to live as you are is not easy, so Badass Black Girl is an ideal journal designed to help young girls to nurture their creativity, self-motivation, and positive self-awareness.”