In this fourth and final quarter of the Pulitzer Prizes’ year-long celebration of its centennial, the councils show no signs of ending the year quietly. In fact, this month has been and will continue to be filled with incredibly diverse programs that range significantly in subject and in format. More than 30 events are occurring in October, making it one of the busiest in terms of council Campfires programming. These programs include festivals, poetry celebrations, distinguished lectures, and reading and writing workshops.

Featured Events:


The New York Council for the Humanities is hosting an “once-in-a-lifetime” event where 14 Pulitzer Prize-winning poets will share the stage to read from their own prize-winning collections as well as select poems by past winners. In Washington state, the council partnered with Copper Canyon Press to host a live webcast, ”Pulitzers in Person,” a tribute to the legendary work of WS Merwin and Lucille Clifton featuring other poets in conversation about what makes the work of these two Pulitzer-recognized authors so extraordinary.


In Tennessee, the council partnered with Vanderbilt University for its annual Southern Festival of Books featuring several Pulitzer Prize events and winners. And, in North Carolina, the council is hosting a two-day festival, “Faith in Literature: A Festival of Contemporary Writers of the Spirit,” featuring Pulitzer Prize winners, including Isabel Wilkerson. Maryland Humanities also launched a festival of readings at the beginning of the month at which they partnered with Olney Theatre Center to host staged readings of the prize-winning works featuring prominent local actors and directed by DC-area’s top artists.


In honor of National Arts and Humanities Month, California Humanities is hosting its final event in the On the Road with California Humanities series with the California Arts Council entitled, “In Tune: Arts & Humanities in the Golden State.” This event, featuring Pulitzer Prize finalist Morton Subotnick, offers a celebration of the arts and humanities as well as a conversation about the importance of providing access to educational opportunities that include the two disciplines.

Additional Campfires this Month:

Check out the many other events, lectures, book discussions, and writing workshops that address contemporary issues through the lens of Prize-winning journalism and literature.


The Kansas Humanities Council’s Pulitzer Project has been focusing on the legacy of William Allen White and his call to protect free expression throughout their multi-faceted programming that includes panel discussions, writing workshops, and lectures. This month, the council has planned five different Campfires events: a presentation entitled “William Allen White and the Russian Revolution” exploring White’s interest in Russia and his diplomatic appointment to the Paris Peace Conference;  another presentation, “Free Speech in an Information-Overloaded World,” that provides an overview of information policy access and changes to raise questions on how and what kinds of information is received by the public; several community writing workshops; and a discussion about the freedom of the press and its role in democracy in, “First Amendment: Speak Up, Speak Out.”

Also this month, the Arkansas Humanities Council hosted Ray Mosley, 1958 Pulitzer Prize-winner for Meritorious Service and Editorial Writing for his coverage of the integration of Central High. Mosley presented on his experience during and following the ‘57 crisis as well as his thoughts on the future of newspapers.

In Oklahoma, the council has been running a number of reading and discussion series including “Civil Rights and Equality,” where participants are encouraged to examine the American context and its unrealized ideals through specific historic and contemporary movements. This month, the council is using Kevin Boyle’s Arc of Injustice: A Sage of Race, Civil Rights, and Murder in the Jazz Age to address racial inequality in the twentieth century, and is also highlighting Louise Erdrich’s novel, A Plague of Doves, to take the conversation of civil rights “beyond the historically familiar black/white and out to the plains” as Erdrich explores the civil rights movement in relation to Native Americans.

The Delaware Humanities Forum is also continuing its series of reading, writing and discussion events including two writing workshops this month to enable creative expression with one focusing on the Pulitzer Prize winning play Between Riverside and Crazy.


Both Vermont Humanities and Oklahoma Humanities are using Pulitzer Prize-winning books and authors to inspire events focused on understanding the American political, economic, and social climates as well as using the books to stir conversations on war. This month, Vermont Humanities hosts Philip Caputo, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of A Rumor of War, who reflects on “how, in his work, war is a context in which our contradictory natures play out, often with stark clarity.” In Oklahoma, the council continues its reading and discussion series “War, Not War, and Peace” with an exploration of Maus by Art Spiegelman and its other series “The American Frontier” with The Way West by A.B. Guthrie.

In Idaho, the council welcomed Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Jon Meacham in its 20th Annual Distinguished Humanities Lecture in Boise, ID. Meacham, a professional biographer, contributing editor at Time Magazine, and skilled storyteller on current affairs, presented on “America Then and Now: What History Tells Us about the Future.”


Through its multiple book discussion series, Vermont Humanities examines characters in the midst of great migrations to explore contemporary culture and politics. This month, the council is using Jhumpa Lahiri’s Interpreter of Maladies and Isabel Wilkerson’s The Warmth of Other Suns: The Epic Story of America’s Great Migration to inform its discussions.

View all October Pulitzer Prizes council Campfires programs on the Spotlight on Pulitzer page.