People: Oct. 5, 1981

He was a fugitive from the North, and his hard, lean looks, the result of a life in prison that consumed nearly 25 of his 37 years, enabled Jack Henry Abbott to mix in easily with the transient roustabouts who work the Louisiana oilfields. It was the sort of life where a man could, if he wanted to, virtually disappear. Earlier this year, Norman Mailer had led a campaign to secure parole for Abbott, largely on the basis of his writing talent. His letters from prison, collected under the title In the Belly of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!