2020 Stowe Prize Winner, Albert Woodfox, for Solitary
Albert Woodfox, known as one of the Angola Three, spent four decades in solitary confinement for a crime he did not commit.
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.
In his memoir, 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. Woodfox’s ability to emerge whole from his odyssey 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 in the United States and around the world.
Woodfox was born in 1947 in New Orleans. A committed activist in prison, he remains so today, speaking 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. Solitary is a finalist for the 2020 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction and the 2019 National Book Award.