Jacqueline E. Lawton

Jacqueline E. Lawton was named one of 30 of the nation's leading black playwrights by Arena Stage’s American Voices New Play Institute. Her plays include: Among These Wild Things, Anna K; Blood-bound and Tongue-tied; Deep Belly Beautiful; The Devil’s Sweet Water; The Hampton Years; The Inferior Sex, Intelligence; Love Brothers Serenade; Mad Breed; and Noms de Guerre. Ms. Lawton received her MFA in Playwriting from the University of Texas at Austin, where she was a James A. Michener Fellow. She is a 2012 TCG Young Leaders of Color award recipient and an alum of National New Play Network (NNPN) Playwright Alum, Arena Stage's Playwrights' Arena, and Center Stage’s Playwrights Collective. Currently, she is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Dramatic Art at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a production dramaturg for PlayMakers Repertory Company. She is a proud member of the Dramatist Guild of America.

Jacqueline E.


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  • Writing Towards the Specific
    As an African American woman playwright from a poor, working class, racist, country town in East Texas, I learned early in life that I am part of a community of people whose voices have been silenced, whose image has been exaggerated and misrepresented, and whose legacy has been erased and exploited. White playwrights, male and female, need to understand that they are writing within a legacy of the people responsible for having done those things to people of color. Neither legacy is fair. They come with unshakable, palpable, and visible burdens.