Audio + Video

Jan,11 2017

Taken from the PEN America event State of the First Amendment 1992- 1993: Mean Speech and Other Freedoms, the late Nat Hentoff briefly and succinctly articulates his interpretation of the intersection of actions within the 1st amendment.  

Jan,04 2017

…freedom implies voluntary restraint, members pledge themselves to oppose such evils of a free press as mendacious publication, deliberate falsehood and distortion of facts for political and personal ends…

Kirkpatrick Sale opens the first International Writers for Peace Day (March 3, 1985) with a brief history of PEN International and a reading of the charter.  Though PEN International was founded in 1921, it was not until 1948 that the charter was approved at the PEN Congress in Copenhagen.

Dec,16 2016

In this interview, Chiranuch “Jiew” Premchaiporn, the internationally-recognized defender of media freedoms and editor of Thai media outlet 'Prachatai' shares her thoughts on the current state of free expression and press freedom in Thailand.

Dec,21 2016

What does Gary Snyder Fear Most?

Find out in this recording taken from Nature Dead, Nature Alive (1991)


The many forms of free expression exist beyond the reaches of our own fingertips, extending to biology, diversity, environmental habitats and the Earth-Community in all of its parts.   

Dec,21 2016

Brent Staples, author and editorial writer for the New York Times, articulates the nature of violence and its trickle-down relationship to the iconography and mythology associated with our most informative and ubiquitous environments.

Dec,01 1983

Free Expression and Multiculturalism can be celebrated through many different avenues of communication. In this respect, the genre of song has a lasting quality that endures time, stretches itself over geographic divides, and transcends the boundaries of language.

Dec,13 2016

Shot on the coldest and snowiest day of the year, "Advice to Myself 2: Resistance" presents a visual and verbal collaboration between author Louise Erdrich, her poet sister Heid E. Erdrich, and artist Elizabeth Day.

Dec,07 2016

From April 13, 1993

Nov,23 2016

From the 1966 International PEN Congress (New York)

Nov,16 2016

All around me, I see the face of America changing as must you, if you take the number 7 train to Queens, the train I use to go to work and soon this wild disruptive perspective of new Americans from non-traditional immigrant countries will burst through the smooth civil surfaces of American literature. [Crista] Wolf is wrong in her final prophecy, we the minorities, we who have survived war and arduous odyssey’s are in the process of writing guerrilla fiction, we are subverting the canons of literature.

Apr,13 1986

"A writer must of course uphold intellectual freedom, defend all aspects of the development of man and pursues the progress of man from he kingdom of necessity to that of freedom from to which ends he will not flinch from his social and moral obligations.  Intellectual freedom is a duty as well as a right, just as the writers imagination is a freedom of choice, so the people, his readers, must be free to choose the writers they concur with.

Feb,22 1989

In this 1989 reading in support and defense of Salman Rushdie, Edward Said speaks to the role of pluralism in a contemporary, hybrid society.

May,19 1982

"I come from a race of people for whom, at one time in this country it was illegal to be taught to read, it was illegal and punishable by physical punishment and sometimes fatal punishment to learn how to read..."

Jul,28 2016

Featuring award-winning prose and poetry from the 2015 PEN Prison Writing Contest, read by Khalil Cumberbatch, Rachel Eliza Griffiths, Siri Hustvedt, Mitchell S. Jackson, Dawn Lundy Martin, Jeffrey Toobin, John Wray, and Sunil Yapa.

Jul,20 2016

On May 25, 2016, Khadija Ismayilova, winner of the 2015 PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award, was released on probation and granted a suspended sentence in a Supreme Court decision rendered in the capital of Azerbaijan. Below, a message from Ismayilova recognizing the efforts of PEN America and free-expression defenders the world over who advocated for her release.

"The unity and solidarity that was demonstrated in my case will help all the governments understand that truth and love will always prevail over lies and hatred. Thank you for your support."

Jun,10 2016

A tête-à-tête with Ethiopian-born Israeli author Dalia Betolin-Sherman, Prix Goncourt recipient Andrei Makine, and Burhan Sönmez, award-winning Turkish author who escaped Turkey with assistance from the Freedom from Torture foundation after being assaulted by the Turkish police.

Jun,10 2016

Global bazaar meets county fair at this fourth annual festival within the Festival. Discover a world of literature, performances, and music on NYU’s beautiful Washington Mews, and its International Houses and Institutes.All events are free and open to the public. For detailed information visit: as.nyu.edu/page/literarymews

Jun,10 2016

What happens when a poem migrates into another language, not just once but twice? Find out at this Festival favorite, where poets, translators, and audience members square off in a smart and spirited exchange over meaning, choice, and freedom.

Jun,10 2016

Nigerian-born journalist Chike Frankie Edozien, who has written on government and health issues—especially the impact of HIV/AIDS among Africans—shares and discusses his work. Currently working on a memoir, Edozien is the co-founder of AFRican Magazine.


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