Margo Jefferson

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Margo Jefferson
Margo Jefferson 2015.jpg
Jefferson at the 2015 Texas Book Festival.
Born Margo Lillian Jefferson
(1947-10-17) October 17, 1947 (age 70)
United States
Occupation Theatre critic, writer, journalist, professor
Genre Memoir, theatre criticism, non-fiction, journalism

Margo Lillian Jefferson (born October 17, 1947) is a former theatre critic at The New York Times[1] and a professor at Eugene Lang College The New School for Liberal Arts.


Jefferson received her Bachelor of Arts from Brandeis University, where she graduated cum laude, and her M.S. from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She became an associate editor at Newsweek in 1973 and stayed at the magazine until 1978. She then served as an assistant professor at the Department of Journalism and Mass Communication at New York University from 1979 to 1983 and from 1989 to 1991. Since then she has taught at the Columbia University School of the Arts, where she is now Professor of Professional Practice in Writing. She joined the Times in 1993, initially as a book reviewer,[2] then went on to win the Pulitzer Prize for Criticism.[3]

Publishers Weekly called her 2006 book, On Michael Jackson, a "slim, smart volume of cultural analysis."[4] Jefferson appeared in Ken Burns's Jazz[5] as jazz is a subject that interests her.[6] She is also working on two books concerning race and culture in America.[7]




Essays and reporting[edit]

  • "Some permutations of we : criticism that comes close to home". The Believer. 11 (3): 22–24. March–April 2013. 


  1. ^ Gans, Andrew (August 24, 2004). "Variety's Isherwood Named New New York Times Critic" Archived 2012-10-17 at the Wayback Machine. Playbill.
  2. ^ OSU Archived 2008-05-13 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ The New York Times bio
  4. ^ "On Michael Jackson". Publishers Weekly. November 28, 2005. 
  5. ^ "Ken Burns’s Jazz", Jazz Center.
  6. ^ Ken Monaco, PBS
  7. ^ New School for Social Research Archived 2006-09-28 at the Wayback Machine.
  8. ^ Alexandra Alter (March 17, 2016). "'The Sellout' Wins National Book Critics Circle's Fiction Award". New York Times. Retrieved March 18, 2016. 
  9. ^ Tracy K. Smith, "Margo Jefferson’s ‘Negroland: A Memoir’" (review), The New York Times, September 15, 2015.