Joanne Leedom-Ackerman

Joanne Leedom-Ackerman is a novelist, short story writer, and journalist. Her works of fiction include The Dark Path to the River and No Marble Angels. She has also published fiction and essays in books and anthologies, including Short Stories of the Civil Rights Movement; Remembering Arthur Miller; Electric Grace; Snakes: An Anthology of Serpent Tales; Beyond Literacy; Women For All Seasons; Fiction and Poetry by Texas Women; The Bicentennial Collection of Texas Short Stories; What You Can Do. Joanne is a Vice President of International PEN and the former International Secretary of International PEN and former Chair of International PEN’s Writers in Prison Committee. Past president of PEN Center USA, she currently serves on the boards of PEN American Center, the PEN/Faulkner Foundation, Poets and Writers, the International Center for Journalists, Human Rights Watch, and the International Crisis Group. She lives in Washington, DC.

Books and Lesson Plans

  • The Dark Path to the River

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    The Dark Path to the River is a love story, one of strong-minded women and men who do not see the world the same. It is a story of power and politics on Wall Street and in Africa. It is also the story of two women, friends and journalists, one black and one white, of their search for empowerment and of the men who both shape and are shaped by their worlds. 

    Appropriate for grades 11 and up.

    Course lesson plans for The Dark Path to the River are currently in development.

  • No Marble Angels

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    In this collection, Leedom-Ackerman explores characters who seek to close distances between each other, distances of race, sex, and age. In a series of interconnected stories a young woman moves to inner-city Baltimore and comes to a new understanding of race, class and her place in the world. Other threads follow the families that she interacts with, painting a vivid picture of life in this urban setting.

    Appropriate for grades 9 and up.

    Course lesson plans for No Marble Angels are currently in development.

Highlighted Resources and Authors