Welcome to the conversation!

Welcome to the conversation!

Harriet Beecher Stowe's (1811-1896) best-selling anti-slavery novel Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852), made her the most famous American woman of the 19th century and galvanized the abolition movement before the Civil War.

The Stowe Center is a 21st-century museum and program center using Stowe's story to inspire social justice and positive change.

The Salons at Stowe programs are a forum to connect the challenging issues (race, gender and class) that impelled Stowe to write and act with the contemporary face of those same issues. The Salon format is based on a robust level of audience participation, with the explicit goal of promoting civic engagement. Recent topics included: Teaching Acceptance; Is Prison the New Slavery; Traces of the Trade: A Story from the Deep North; Creativity and Change; Race, Gender and Politics Today; How to be an Advocate

This blog will expand the reach of these community conversations to the online audience. Add your posts and comments to keep the conversation going! Commit to action by clicking HERE to stay up to date on Salon and social justice news.

For updates on Stowe Center programs and events, sign up for our enews at http://harrietbeecherstowe.org/email.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

5 Questions on Race for #BlackHistoryMonth by @SitesConscience

In recognition of Black History Month, the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center participated in a question series on racial justice sponsored by The International Coalition of Sites of Conscience. The Coalition is a collective of museums, institutions, and memorials that connect the past to the present in order to inform contemporary work towards justice. For Black History Month, The Coalition highlighted five member sites by featuring a question from each site on black history, race, or the fight towards racial justice.

Below is the question submitted by the Stowe Center:
Racism is often interpreted as one individual acting with prejudice towards another individual on the basis of race. But history teaches us that racism is not only individual, but also institutional. Racism is built into the foundation of the United States from the early days of colonization and slavery. Today, it operates in education, policing, health care, housing and even food policy. When defining racism, why do many people ignore institutional racism? How can you challenge institutional racism today?

The other featured sites included the Missouri History Museum, the National Civil Rights Museum, America's Black Holocaust Museum, and the Pauli Murray Project.

How would you answer the question? Why do you think we chose to ask this particular question? What question would you ask? Check out the questions asked my the other institutions and share your reactions in the comments below! 

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

#StoweSyllabus: What We're Reading this Week

Articles and current events that got us thinking over the week! 

Hartford’s Citizens of Color, 1863-1890: Black society after the Civil War
February 18, 2016, Beautifully Inspired Women’s Magazine

Who’s responsible for mass incarceration?
Josie Helen, February 15, 2016, Seven Scribes

What does the Academy value in a black performance?
Brandon K. Thorp, February 19, 2016, The New York Times

The power of the prosecutor: Adam Foss speaks at TED2016 on the key to changing the criminal justice system
Kate Torgovnick May, February 18, 2016, TED

A quick summary of why only white people want to make America “great” again
Ben Mathis-Lilley, February 22,2106, Slate

What are your reactions to the pieces? What articles, news pieces, or video-clips have you come across over the week? Let us know, below!

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Salons at Stowe: Meet the Featured Guests

Join the Stowe Center for the first Salon at Stowe of 2016! This evening, featured guests Iran Nazario and Mike Lawlor will lead a discussion on Criminal Justice Reform in Connecticut. Learn more about the guests below!

Mike Lawlor, CT Under Secretary for Criminal Justice Policy and Planning and Associate Professor of Criminal Justice in the Henry C. Lee College of Criminal Justice and Forensic Sciences at the University of New Haven.

Mike Lawlor served twelve terms as a member of the Connecticut House of Representatives representing his hometown of East Haven. As chairman of the Judiciary Committee from 1995-2011, Lawlor played a key role in passing two amendments to Connecticut's constitution, the first established explicit rights for victims of crime, and the second eliminated the patronage-ridden and corrupt county sheriff system.

Lawlor also helped to enact a number of workable gun control laws, rewrite and toughen the state's domestic violence laws, reformed the juvenile justice system, addressed racial disparities in the criminal justice system, passed laws ending discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, and addressed recidivism and prison overcrowding. He also played a key role is establishing and now modernizing Connecticut’s Sex Offender Registry. 

Iran Nazario, COMPASS Peacebuilders & Community Outreach Director, COMPASS Youth Collaborative.

Iran Nazario has worked in gang prevention, violence mediation, youth engagement and program management for 24 years, beginning as a volunteer on the streets of Hartford. As Director of COMPASS Peacebuilders, he leads a team of 16 men and women whose goal is to decrease the level of youth violence throughout the city. Since the program began, COMPASS Peacebuilders has served over 3,000 youth with a success rate of more than 80%. 

What do you plan to ask the featured guests? How can CT be a leader in criminal justice reform? Join the Stowe Center for the first Salon at Stowe of 2016. The program will begin at 5:30 pm in the Stowe Visitor Center.