BLACK VOICES
07/29/2016 03:44 pm ET | Updated Jan 09, 2017

Roxane Gay Is The Lead Writer Of A Marvel Comic. Here's Why That's Huge.

No, it's not just because she's the first black woman to do it.

Frederick M. Brown via Getty Images
Roxane Gay, making history. 

Writer Roxane Gay is about to make history. The writer, best known for her book of essays “Bad Feminist,” has been tapped by Marvel to become one of the first black women to be a lead writer on a Marvel comic. 

Gay will be joined by poet Yona Harvey, also a black woman, to work on the comic “World of Wakanda.” The series is a spinoff from the Black Panther series, written by Ta-Nehisi Coates. 

In an interview with The New York Times, Gay said signing on to do the comic is the “most bizarre thing I’ve ever done.” 

“And I mean that in the best possible way,” she added. 

Marvel has recently made a concerted effort to diversify its running titles. Earlier this month, the company announced that the new Iron Man will be a black teenaged girl genius. Superheroes of color like Miles Morales (Spider-Man), Lunella Lafayette (Moon Girl), and Kamala Khan (Ms. Marvel) have also been introduced. 

The fact that Gay has broken this barrier at Marvel is amazing. She’s not only making history; her inclusion on Marvel’s long list of lead writers is also further proof that diversity doesn’t mean just the characters we see on the page (or screen), but also the people behind the scenes ― writing, drawing, and bringing these characters to life. 

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