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Stowe Prize 2020

The Harriet Beecher Stowe Center is honoring Albert Woodfox, known as one of the Angola Three, as the 2020 Stowe Prize winner. Woodfox receives the award for Solitary, his memoir about the four decades he spent in solitary confinement for a crime he did not commit.

Stowe Prize programs include a free public program with Woodfox on Wednesday, September 23 and the presentation of the Stowe Prize to Woodfox under the Big Tent on Thursday, September 24. All programs take place on the Stowe Center grounds, located at 77 Forest Street.

The Stowe Prize recognizes the author of a distinguished book of general adult fiction or nonfiction whose written work illuminates a critical social issue in the tradition of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin.

Stowe Prize 2020 Schedule | Public Program Registration | Big Tent Tickets | Sponsor Stowe Prize 2020

Stowe Prize 2020 Schedule

Wednesday, September 23

5:30 – 7:00 pm
A Conversation with Albert Woodfox
Free and open to the public — Registration required
Stowe Center Grounds, 77 Forest Street, Hartford

Thursday, September 24

~ Ticketed events ~

4:30 – 6:00 pm
Self-guided tours of the Stowe House
Stowe Center Grounds, 77 Forest Street, Hartford

5:00 – 6:00 pm
Patron reception
Day House Parlor, 77 Forest Street, Hartford

6:00 – 8:00 pm
Big Tent
Dinner and Award Presentation
Stowe Center Grounds, 77 Forest Street, Hartford

8:00 – 8:30 pm
Book signing with Albert Woodfox
Stowe Center Visitor Center, 77 Forest Street, Hartford

About Albert Woodfox and Solitary

Albert Woodfox, known as one of the Angola Three, spent four decades in solitary confinement for a crime he did not commit. In Solitary, he shares not only how he survived his ordeal, but also how he was able to inspire his fellow prisoners – and now all of us – with his humanity and devoted activism.

Albert’s ability to emerge whole from his journey within America’s prison and judicial systems is a triumph of the human spirit and makes his book a clarion call to reform the inhumanity of solitary confinement. Remarkably self-aware that anger or bitterness would have destroyed him in solitary confinement, and sustained by the shared solidarity of two fellow Black Panthers, Albert turned his anger into activism and resistance.

The Angola Three resolved never to be broken by the grinding inhumanity and corruption that effectively held them for decades as political prisoners. Woodfox survived to give us Solitary, a chronicle of rare power and humanity that proves the better spirits of our nature can thrive against any odds.

Woodfox was born in 1947 in New Orleans. A committed activist in prison, he remains so today and speaks to a wide array of audiences, including the Innocence Project, Harvard, Yale, the National Lawyers Guild, and at Amnesty International events in London, Paris, Denmark, Sweden, and Belgium.

About Stowe Prize

The Stowe Prize recognizes the author of a distinguished book of general adult fiction or nonfiction whose written work illuminates a critical social issue in the tradition of Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin. The winning book applies informed inquiry, is accessible and engaging to a wide audience, and promotes empathy and understanding. In making this award, the Stowe Center recognizes the value of diversity to strengthen our communities.

Author of the international best-selling novel of the 19th century, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Stowe’s words and actions remain relevant today. Stowe believed her purpose in life was to write, and her most famous work exposed the truth about the greatest injustice of her day – human slavery.

Albert Woodfox is the seventh recipient of the Stowe Prize, following Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn in 2011 for Half the Sky, Michelle Alexander in 2013 for The New Jim Crow, Ta-Nehisi Coates in 2015 for The Case for Reparations, Bryan Stevenson in 2017 for Just Mercy, and Matthew Desmond in 2018 for Evicted.

Stowe Prize 2020 Selection Committee

Cheryl Greenberg, Ph.D.
Joan Hedrick, Ph.D.
Patricia Hill, Ph.D.
Jared Jeter
Jeffrey O.G. Ogbar, Ph.D.
Robert Roggeveen
Barbara Sicherman, Ph.D.
Mary Ellen White

Stowe Prize 2020 Event Committee

Carolyn Treiss, Chair
Susan Dunn
Carrie Hammond
Samaia Hernandez
Joan Hurwit
Jeanna Grimes Ogbar
Christine Palm
Robert Roggeveen