Books by Gann and Willen

Presentations by the Authors

We’re available to speak to student groups as well as to adults. Our presentations vary with the audience. Our presentations for students can focus on slavery worldwide, on slavery in particular regions of the world, or on abolitionists. We can explore specific periods of history, the world today, or both past and present. Our interactive school visits engage young audiences through stories of the lives slaves lived in the past, stories of daring escapes, and stories of the heroes who have fought slavery. We show students how to use the Internet to unearth the past and to discover what modern abolitionists are doing today.


“Marjorie and Janet were able to strike the perfect balance between imparting in-depth information and giving a lively talk perfectly-suited to their audience’s needs and interests. This is all the more impressive given the difficult subject matter with which they were dealing. Through the use of real-life stories and audience interaction they made the complex history of slavery across the world accessible, without in any way diminishing its gravity.”
– Amelia Brown, community organizer for training workshop sponsored by the Embassy of the United States of America in Canada, the University of Ottawa, the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board, and the Ottawa-Carleton Elementary Teachers’ Federation.

“So many resources, activities and ideas were shared with me. I felt like I could immediately apply them to my teaching. The authors of Five Thousand Years of Slavery . . . offered fun, varied activities that apply to grade 7 students, and that’s great!”
– Teacher, Ottawa workshop

““I found the presentation by the authors and their neat facts, that they had discovered along the way in research, very good and informative. I found the additional ‘gift’ of books and resources wonderful. The lesson / resource booklet that went with the text was so nice to have. I will certainly use excerpts and pictures from the text and the resource booklet for constructing my lessons in class in the future.”
– Teacher, Ottawa workshop

“Marjorie’s presentation regarding the history of slavery was awe-inspiring. The extremely informative content accompanied by numerous slides kept my pupils and colleagues captivated throughout the session.”
– Elene Segal, Teacher, Aviv High School, Ra’anana, Israel

Recent presentations include:

  • Free the Children, Toronto
  • Reading for the Love of It, Toronto
  • The Toronto French School
  • St. Ann’s Academy, Washington, DC
  • Laogai Museum, Washington, DC
  • Office of Refugee Resettlement, Health and Human Services, Washington, DC
  • Gaithersburg Book Festival, Gaithersburg, MD
  • Book Expo America, New York
  • Vancouver International Writers’ Festival, Vancouver, BC
  • Schweinhaut Senior Center, Silver Spring, MD
  • Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School, Rockville, MD
  • Aspen Hill Public Library, Silver Spring, MD
  • Alliance Against Modern Slavery, Toronto

Prior to our visits, we welcome an opportunity to speak with teachers about their curriculum so that we can tailor our presentation to their learning objectives. Please send an email to Janet Willen at We’re happy to discuss dates, the length of sessions, fees, and travel arrangements.

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