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PEN America Blog

September 1, 2015

"When I look within, I only see that thin man who miraculously withstood fifty lashes, while a group of people celebrated his pain, repeatedly chanting Allahu Akbar. All for the articles you’re about to read."

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September 1, 2015

"Erasure happens when it comes to the history/lives/contribution/resistance/survival of people of color in America, and so with my pen I make sure that they exist and are remembered in my stanzas, in between the lines, and on every space of my paper. Writers of color deserve to take up space and record our lives and record our communities because no one else will."

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August 29, 2015

In this second of two blog posts commemorating the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, Fatima Shaik reflects on the work of PEN's Children's and Young Adult Book Committee in New Orleans, gentrification, and the state of education and free expression in the city post-Katrina.

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August 27, 2015

To commemorate the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, educator and poet Dr. Mona Lisa Saloy discusses how New Orleans is rebuilding, and shares two poems about the disaster and its aftermath.

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August 27, 2015

In celebration of her birthday, listen to this archived podcast of Jeanette Winterson, author of Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit. In this podcast, Winterson discusses the role of books and faith in her life at Faith & Reason, from part of the 2006 PEN World Voices Festival.

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August 26, 2015

Master of fine art? More like paper / airplane disaster factory. // Gerard Manley Hopkins? / More like a clod of Earth flung skyward / towards God's stupid face.

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August 25, 2015

"When I came to America, I found that censorship had no home on the ground, but it was somehow in the air, implicit. Speech here is usually restricted to what is “acceptable.” In other words, censorship precedes speech here in America, as opposed to in Iraq, where censorship follows speech."

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August 24, 2015

"We are not trapped in our narrative."

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August 21, 2015

A new website featuring articles, essays, fiction, and films by both established and new LGBTQI artists and writers, as well as information and campaign resources about the violence too often used to silence these same voices.

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August 21, 2015

Each one I held lightly in my palm—blowing on it to see it quiver, examining its ridges, squeezing it until the shell was as warm as my skin. Then I’d tuck it inside my cheek to suck on it and make my saliva taste like earth. That acorn would become my “lucky” acorn.

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