Law School to Host ‘Orange is the New Black’ Author Piper Kerman

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by Alexa Millinger

Piper Kerman, author of Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women’s Prison, will be the keynote speaker at the 2014 Milton and Ethel Sorokin Symposium, hosted by the American Civil Liberties Union of Connecticut (ACLU), on April 21 at UConn Law School.

The annual Connecticut ACLU event, co-sponsored by the Law School, centers around First Amendment topics. Kerman, whose memoir inspired the Netflix television series “Orange is the New Black”, will talk with ACLU of Connecticut Staff Attorney David McGuire on Censorship and the Rights of Prisoners.

“We were thrilled when Piper Kerman agreed to speak at the symposium because we admire her strong and eloquent support for prisoners’ rights,” said Jeanne Leblanc, Communications Manager for the Connecticut ACLU.

She said the ACLU’s Field Organizer Isa Mujahid heard Kerman speak at Yale last November and asked her afterward if she would be a speaker at their own Symposium.

“The annual symposium always focuses on First Amendment rights, and we had just seen a controversy at the women’s prison in Niantic over censorship at the library there,” Leblanc said. “Piper seemed the ideal person to talk about that, as an author and as a person who has been incarcerated.” Past Sorokin Symposium Speakers include Mary Beth Tinker, the plaintiff in Tinker v. Des Moines, and Anthony Lewis, author of Gideon’s Trumpet.

Registration for the event is open and free of charge. To register, visit