Friday, May 28, 2010

‘Context: Asia/Pacific' 2009.

PEN International Magazine

'For anyone who believes that words can help us chart a path, PEN International is essential reading' Alberto Manguel

'Reading in the pages of PEN International we celebrate not just our differences but also our common humanity and universal values' Azar Nafisi

PEN International addresses a global audience and features original work by contemporary writers from around the world.

Asia Pacific Download
[PDF document | 985kb]

English PEN Events next week: Zadie Smith and Azerbaijan demo

English PEN Events next week: Zadie Smith and Azerbaijan demo

Zadie Smith- Changing My Mind

Tuesday 1 June, 6.30pm

Free Word Centre, London EC1R 3GA

£8/£5 members

How did George Eliot's love life affect her prose? Why did Kafka write at three in the morning? In what ways is Barack Obama like Eliza Doolittle? If Roland Barthes killed the Author, can Nabokov revive him? These are just some of the questions addressed by Zadie Smith in her recently published collection of essays, Changing My Mind. In this very special event, the highly acclaimed author of the novels White Teeth, The Autograph Man and On Beauty, will be reading and taking audience questions. Zadie Smith was born in North London in 1975. She read English at Cambridge, graduating in 1997. Her acclaimed first novel, White Teeth (2000), won a number of awards and prizes, including the Guardian First Book Award, the Whitbread First Novel Award, and the Commonwealth Writers Prize (Overall Winner, Best First Book). In 2003 she was nominated by Granta magazine as one of 20 'Best of Young British Novelists' and her third novel, On Beauty, was published in 2005, and won the 2006 Orange Prize for Fiction.

Book online or by calling the English PEN office on 020 7324 2535.

Demonstration for Eynulla Fatullayev

Thursday 3 June, 12pm

The Embassy of the Republic of Azerbaijan, London, W8 5DL

On Thursday 3rd June English PEN, Amnesty International UK, ARTICLE 19 and Index on Censorship will be holding a demonstration outside the Azerbaijani embassy in London to call for the immediate release of Eynulla Fatullayev. Please join us!

English PEN's Honorary Member Azerbaijani newspaper editor Eynulla Fatullayev, 33, is currently serving an eight-and-a-half year prison sentence based on trumped up charges of terrorism and defamation. He was jailed in April 2007 after writing a series of articles critical of the authorities. For more details on Eynulla's case, please click here.

RSVP: For logistical reasons it would be helpful if we can estimate numbers likely to attend the demonstration - please email with "Azerbaijan demo [insert number] attending" in subject header to let us know if you - and any of your friends, family or colleagues - are planning to join us. Thank you.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Call for the Release of Call for the Release of Nay Phone Latt‏

Dear Friends,

On Tuesday, April 27, PEN awarded the 2010 PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award to imprisoned blogger and poet Nay Phone Latt, who is currently serving a 12-year sentence in Burma. We are now asking you to show your solidarity with Nay Phone Latt by writing a letter to the military junta demanding his immediate and unconditional release.

At 29 years old, Nay Phone Latt spoke to his fellow citizens and the outside world about the aspirations and frustrations of Burma’s youth. He was arrested in Rangoon on January 29, 2008, following the crackdown on the so-called Saffron Uprising in the autumn of 2007. On November 10, 2008, he was sentenced to 20.5 years in prison for his blogging activities, a sentence that was reduced to 12 years in February 2009. He is currently being held in Pa-an Prison in Karen State, 135 miles from Rangoon.

When Nay Phone Latt learned that he was being honored with the Freedom to Write Award, he was able to dispatch a message from his prison cell that said, “This award is dedicated to all writing hands which are tightly restricted by the unfairness and are strongly eager for the freedom to write, all over the world.”

Please join the chorus of voices that are speaking up for Nay Phone Latt by sending a letter calling for his release. Visit PEN’s simple letter-writing page, and urge five friends to take action by passing along the link.

Learn more about Nay Phone Latt’s case by visiting

Thank you, as always, for taking action on behalf of our imprisoned colleagues.


K. Anthony Appiah
President, PEN American Center

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PEN American Center | 588 Broadway, Suite 303 | New York, NY 10012 | (212)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

PEN News: May 13, 2010‏


PEN Announces t
he Inaugural PEN/ESPN Award for Literary Sports Writing

The award was established to honor the best nonfiction books about sports. Submissions are being accepted through June 15. >> More


Stop by the PEN table at this year’s BookExpo America in New York, taking place May 25–May 27.

If you are planning to attend, please let us know by contacting Nick Burd at



Imprisoned Burmese Blogger Nay Phone Latt Honored
Salman Rushdie, Margaret Atwood, and Patti Smith were among the more than 500 PEN supporters joining PEN American Center in honoring Nay Phone Latt, one of Burma’s leading bloggers, with the 2010 PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award. >> More

Uighur PEN Member Ilham Tohti Barred From Leaving China
Economist, writer, and Uighur PEN Member Ilham Tohti was prevented by the Chinese government from attending an international conference in Turkey. Tohti had previously been detained on four occasions for his peaceful activities. >> More


The Sixth Annual 2010 PEN World Voices Festival
Another exciting week-long celebration of books and writing has wrapped. The Festival featured 150 writers, 40 countries, and more than 50 events. Highlights include:

War (video)
With Deborah Amos, Philip Gourevitch, Arnon Grunberg, Sebastian Junger, Daniele Mastrogiacomo, and Sarah Montague; introduced by Steven Isenberg

Utopia and Dystopia: Geographies of the Possible (video)
With Inga Kuznetsova, Jonathan Lethem, Eshkol Nevo, and Andrzej Stasiuk; moderated by Albert Mobilio

Weather Report: What Can We Do? (video)
With Jostein Gaarder, James Hansen, Frederic Hauge, Bjørn Lomborg, Bill McKibben, Andrew Revkin, and Cynthia Rosenzweig; moderated by Robert Silvers

Visit PEN’s Festival multimedia archive for video, audio, and photos from this year’s events, with more to come.

PEN America 12: Correspondences
The latest issue of PEN America presents e-mail exchanges, letters, telegrams, epistolary fiction, and much more. Sam Lipsyte sends a note to Barry Hannah, Anne Carson searches letters from a lost brother, and Robert Walser writes behind the walls of a sanitarium. >> More
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