Joan Baranow, PhD

Joan founded and teaches in Dominican’s MFA program in creative writing. Her poetry has appeared in The Gettysburg Review, The Paris Review, JAMA, Feminist Studies, Spillway, and other magazines. Her poetry has also appeared in the anthologies that focus on writing and healing: Women Write Their Bodies: Stories of Illness and Recovery (Kent State, 2007) and The Art of Medicine in Metaphors (Copernicus Healthcare, 2012). She has published four books of poetry, most recently In the Next Life (Poetic Matrix Press, 2019). A Fellow of the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts and long-time member of the Squaw Valley Community of Writers, she has won individual artists fellowships in poetry from the Marin Arts Council and from the Ohio Arts Council. With her husband, physician, and poet David Watts, she produced the PBS documentary “Healing Words: Poetry & Medicine.” Her second documentary, “The Time We Have,” presents an intimate portrait of a young woman facing terminal illness.


Rutgers University, PhD, English

SUNY- Binghamton, MA, English with Certificate in Creative Writing

Hollins College, BA, English

Research Interests

Contemporary American poetry, southern writers, narrative medicine, and the craft of documentary filmmaking.

Honors and Awards

  • Rochelle Radner Award, Marsh Hawk Press
  • Nominated for Outstanding Teacher of the Year, Dominican University of California, 2008 and 2012