born 1954

once named one of People's most beautiful people ~ tragic family turmoil {death of child, abuse allegations, fraught working relationship with husband, husband's suicide} ~ National Book Award ~ well-respected among establishment {Toni Morrison + Phillip Roth are fans}

bio bits

her quotes

all quotes by Louise Erdrich (8)

"I was in love with the whole world and all that lived in its rainy arms."

Love Medicine | january 1984

"Decide first what is authentic, then go after it with all your heart."

Advice to Myself | january 2003

"Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won't either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning."

The Painted Drum | september 2005

"You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up."

The Painted Drum | september 2005

"History works itself out in the living."

The Plague of Doves | january 2006

"When we are young, the words are scattered all around us. As they are assembled by experience, so also are we, sentence by sentence, until the story takes shape."

The Plague of Doves | 2008

"Knowledge without compassion is dead knowledge...Beware of knowledge without love."

Dartmouth commencement address | june 2009

"It is love of peace that makes you a warrior."

Dartmouth commencement address | june 2009
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curated with care by Alicia Williamson