Diane Ackerman

Ithaca, NY
Humanities and Arts
Member Since

Diane Ackerman is the author of twenty-four works of poetry and nonfiction, including three New York Times bestsellers: "The Human Age: The World Shaped by Us," which received the PEN Henry David Thoreau Award; "A Natural History of the Senses," which inspired a PBS NOVA series, which she hosted; and "The Zookeeper's Wife," which received the Orion Book Award. The movie version of "The Zookeeper's Wife" appeared in 2017, with Jessica Chastain as Antonina. Her other nonfiction includes "One Hundred Names for Love," which was a finalist for both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Circle Critics Award; "An Alchemy of Mind," a poetics of the brain based on modern neuroscience; "Cultivating Delight: A Natural History of the Garden;" "Deep Play,” which considers play, creativity, and our need for transcendence; “A Slender Thread,” about her years as a crisis line counselor; "The Rarest of the Rare" and "The Moon by Whale Light," about the plight and fascination of endangered animals; "A Natural History of Love," a tour of love’s many facets; and "On Extended Wings," her memoir of flying. Her poetry has been published in leading literary journals and in seven collections. She also writes nature books in poetry and prose for children. Among her prizes and awards are an honorary doctorate from Kenyon College, the John Burroughs Nature Award, Orion Book Award, PEN Henry David Thoreau Nature Writing Award, and Lavan Poetry Prize, as well as being honored as a Literary Lion by the New York Public Library. She was a finalist in the Journalist in Space Project (cancelled after Challenger). She also has the rare distinction of having a molecule named after her--dianeackerone--a sex pheromone in crocodilians.

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