Karen Houppert

Karen Houppert

Karen Houppert is the associate director of the MA in Writing program at Johns Hopkins University. Her reporting has appeared in a wide variety of publications, including The Washington Post Magazine, Newsday, The Nation, Salon, Slate, Mother Jones, Ms., The Village Voice, Al Jazeera, Baltimore City Paper, The Baltimore Sun, Urbanite, Style, and others. Formerly the editor of Baltimore City Paper, she has also been a staff writer for The Village Voice. She has won several awards, including a National Women’s Political Caucus Award, a 2003 Newswomen’s Club of New York Front Page Award, several Nation Investigative Fund grants and a Kaiser Family Foundation Media Fellowship. She is the author of three nonfiction books The Curse: Confronting the Last Taboo, Menstruation (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 1999), Home Fires Burning (Ballantine, 2005), and Chasing Gideon: The Elusive Quest for Poor People’s Justice (The New Press, 2013). She came to John’s Hopkins University after being an assistant professor at Morgan State’s School of Global Journalism and Communication and serving on the faculty of the MA in Writing Program at Johns Hopkins University for nearly a decade. She received her MFA from the Bennington Writing Seminars and these days she is living in Baltimore writing about the criminal justice system, race, poverty, education, politics, public health—and their unholy mix here and in the nation at large. Last updated July 2017


The Backstories

The Backstory: Karen Houppert

Karen Houppert talks about the fiftieth anniversary of Gideon v. Wainwright, the case that gave every American the right to an attorney in a criminal trial.


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