F291. Double Bind: Women Writers on Ambition

Room 202A, Washington Convention Center, Level Two
Friday, February 10, 2017
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm


A woman must be ambitious in order to have a meaningful career in the arts. But ambition in women is often seen as un-feminine, egoistic, and aggressive rather than crucial to great work and identity. Until recently, no conversation has taken place to help women navigate this pervasive but unspoken double bind. On this panel, women across diverse backgrounds genres provide both stories from the trenches and practical strategies for progressing in the arts, academia, and beyond.



Robin Romm's story collection, The Mother Garden, was a finalist for the PEN USA prize. Her memoir, The Mercy Papers, was a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. She is writing/curating an essay collection, Double Bind: Women on Ambition. She is faculty at Warren Wilson's low-residency program.

Pam Houston is the author of five books of fiction and nonfiction including Cowboys Are My Weakness and Contents May Have Shifted. She teaches in the creative writing programs at the Institute for American Indian Arts and the University of California, Davis, and directs the literary nonprofit Writing by Writers.

Erika Sanchez is a poet, novelist, and essayist. Her poetry collection, Lessons on Expulsion, and her young adult novel, Brown Girl Problems, are forthcoming. She has received a "Discovery"/Boston Review Poetry Prize and a Ruth Lilly Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Fellowship.

Claire Vaye Watkins is the author of Gold, Fame, Citrus, and Battleborn, winner of the Story Prize, the Dylan Thomas Prize, and the Young Lions Fiction Award, among others. A Guggenheim Fellow, she is an assistant professor in the Helen Zell Writers' Program at the University of Michigan.

Hawa Allan writes cultural criticism, fiction, and poetry. Her work has appeared in the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and Transition, among other places. She is essays editor at the Offing and a graduate of Columbia Law School, where she was a fellow at the Center for the Study of Law and Culture.


March 4–7, 2020
San Antonio, TX

Henry B. González Convention Center