Photo Credit: Cindi Shattuck


With sincere excitement, the Stowe Center announces Dr. Ruha Benjamin our 2023 Stowe Prize Winner, author of Viral Justice: How We Grow the World We Want (Princeton Press, 2022), a profound call to action to reckon with the many injustices that shape our world.

Born of a stubborn hopefulness, Viral Justice offers a passionate, inspiring, and practical vision of how small changes can add up to large ones, transforming our relationships and communities, and helping us build a more just and joyful world.



“This is an openhearted, multilayered work that vibrates with ideas on ways to make a new world out of the interlocking crises of COVID-19 and racial capitalism. Progress may be a “tear-soaked mirage,” as Benjamin writes, yet her book is far from devoid of a sense of humor or hope, full of ways to “live poetically” while remaking the systems that have failed us.” –Vulture, Most Anticipated Books of 2022.



Stowe Prize 2023 Events

Major celebrations are planned to be held by the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center: Thursday, September 21 – a Big Tent Celebration; Friday, September 22 – a free public event. More details available in the Calendar events!

About the Prize

The Stowe Prize recognizes the author of a distinguished book of general adult fiction or nonfiction whose written work illuminates a critical social justice 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 creating this award, the Stowe Center recognizes the value of diversity to strengthen our communities.

Interested in joining the book club for all five book Stowe Prize Finalists?  Register now for the virtual Social Justice Reading Circle, March to July.


Elizabeth AlexanderThe Trayvon Generation
Ruha BenjaminViral Justice: How to Grow the World We Want
Andrea ElliotInvisible Child: Poverty, Survival & Hope in an American City
Farah Jasmine GriffinRead Until You Understand: The Profound Wisdom of Black Life and Literature
Imani PerrySouth to America: A Journey Below the Mason Dixon to Understand the Soul of a Nation