Cancelled: LeAnne Howe

Due to unforeseen circumstances LeAnne Howe has cancelled her upcoming Dallas appearance. Stay tuned for new dates.

What: 1st Hearings presents LeAnne Howe
When: Sunday, February 22, 7 pm

Where: The Wild Detectives
Hosted by: Charles Dee Mitchell

Student Readers from Yavneh Academy: Denise Folz & Cassie Gross

LeAnne will be guest presenter at the Yavneh Academy Arts Day, annually organized by Dr. Tim Cloward.

LeAnne Howe (born in 1951) is an American author and English Department Chair at University of Georgia. An enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, Howe’s work has been published in a variety of journals and anthologies. Her book Shell Shaker received the Before Columbus Foundation‘s American Book Award for 2002.

Howe is an author, playwright, and scholar. Born and educated in Oklahoma, she writes fiction, creative non-fiction, plays, poetry, and screenplays that primarily deal with American Indian experiences. She has read her fiction and been an invited lecturer in Japan, Jordan, Israel, Romania, and Spain. Founder and director of WagonBurner Theatre Troop, her plays have been produced in Los Angeles, New York City, New Mexico, Maine, Texas, and Colorado.

Howe is the screenwriter and on-camera narrator for the 90-minute PBS documentary Indian Country Diaries: Spiral of Fire. The documentary takes Howe to the North Carolina homelands of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to discover how their fusion of tourism, community, and cultural preservation is the key to the tribe’s health in the 21st century.

She is also writer/co-producer of a new documentary project, Playing Pastime: American Indian Fast-Pitch Softball, and Survival, with three-time Emmy award-winning filmmaker, James Fortier. The story is about the southeastern tribes and Indians who have been playing baseball and fast-pitch softball since the 1880s in Indian Territory, now Oklahoma. Production began in August 2004.

Howe’s first novel, Shell Shaker (Aunt Lute Books, San Francisco), received an American Book Award in 2002 from the Before Columbus Foundation. The novel was a finalist for the 2003 Oklahoma Book Award, and awarded Wordcraft Circle Writer of the Year, 2002, Creative Prose.Equinoxes Rouge, the French translation, was the 2004 finalist for Prix Médicis étranger, one of France’s top literary awards.

Evidence of Red (Salt Publishing, UK, 2005), a collection of poetry and prose, rails against lost lands and lovers, heralds death and mad warriors, and celebrates a doomed love affair between Hollywood’s invented characters: “Noble Savage” and “Indian Sports Mascot”. This collection of lyric and prose poems won the Oklahoma States Book Award in 2005. Portions of the book were featured in the third edition of The World Is a Text(Prentice Hall, 2008) by Jonathan Silverman and Dean Rader.

Miko Kings, an Indian baseball novel set in Ada, Oklahoma in 1907 and also 1969 and 2006, was published in 2007 by Aunt Lute Books. The story centers on Choctaw journalist Lena Coulter and on Hope Little Leader, the Choctaw pitcher who had the most contorted windup in Indian baseball history. Other characters are slugger Blip Bleen, catcher Batteries Goingsnake, first baseman Lucius Mummy, also known as “the barrel” and Ezol Day, a Choctaw postal clerk in Indian Territory who tries to patent her Choctaw theory of relativity and inadvertently changes the course of history for the Indians and their baseball team. “This is where the ‘twentieth-century Indian’ really begins”, says Henri Day, “not in the abstractions of Congressional Acts—but on the prairie diamond.”

Though she is best known for her fiction, Howe is also an accomplished scholar. She has authored a book chapter on Choctaw history, contributed two important essays on her theory of “tribalography”, and collaborated on literary criticism projects with Craig Howe (no relation), Harvey Markowitz, and Dean Rader. Howe has been a visiting professor at Carleton College, Grinnell College, Sinte Gleska University in Mission, South Dakota, on the Rosebud Sioux Reservation, Wake Forest University, North Carolina, and at the University of Cincinnati in the Women’s Studies Department. In 2003 she was the Louis D. Rubin Jr. Writer-in-Residence at Hollins University, Roanoke, Virginia. In 2006-07 she was the John and Renee Grisham’s Writer-in-Residence, University of Mississippi, Oxford, MS. In May 2008, Howe was awarded a Poetry Fellowship at Soul Mountain Retreat, sponsored by former Connecticut poet Laureate Marilyn Nelson in East Haddam, Connecticut. In March 2010, Miko Kings: An Indian Baseball Story was the 2009-10 Read-in Selection for Hampton University, Hampton VA. Hampton University also held a mini-literary conference on Miko Kings. Ten papers and 3 panel discussions were given on the novel during the conference. In March 2011, Howe was awarded the Tulsa Library Trust’s “American Indian Author Award” at the Central Library, Tulsa Oklahoma.

In 2010-2011, Howe was a J. William Fulbright Scholar in Amman, Jordan where she taught American Indian and American literatures at theUniversity of Jordan, Amman. She was also researching a new novel set in both Transjordan, 1917 and in Allen, Oklahoma, 2011. Currently Howe is a Professor at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in American Indian Studies, English, and Theater.

Students who have worked with Howe have gone on to work for the Chicago Sun Times, and The New York Times. They are both native and non natives who have published memoir, poetry, and creative non-fiction. Some former students are now working in professional theater companies, while others are teachers.

In 2012 Ms. Howe was the recipient of a United States Artists Fellow award.


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