Monday, 22 November 2021



El sábado 20 de noviembre, Jordi Amat publicó un excelente artículo dando noticia del lanzamiento de las versiones española, vasca y catalana del libro en Babelia, el suplemento literario del País.

Amat empieza su artículo narrando el acompañamiento que PEN hizo a Salman Rushdie en los años que tuvo que desaparecer del mapa a causa de la fatwa de Jomeini y de que manera PEN urdió la operación Code Name Sally para que pudiera volver a aparecer en público en 1992.

El autor también pone de relieve el trabajo inmenso de PEN en defensa de los escritores sitiados en Sarajevo, con la presencia fundamental de Susan Sontag y Juan Goytisolo y una red activa para hacer llegar ayuda a los escritores y periodistas sitiados.
Amat concluye con palabras clarividentes y emotivas sobre el trabajo periodístico de Anna Politkovskaya, su persecución por parte del FSB ruso y su despiadado asesinato.
El libro se puede adquirir en versión española, vasca y catalana en librerías y en las webs de Galaxia Gutenberg y Txalaparta.

Damos las gracias a Antoni Tapies, Jaume Plensa y Sally Howell que en su día regalaron su obra para carteles de PEN. obras que son hoy las cubiertas de las tres versiones del libro.



On November 15th, International Day of the Imprisoned Writer, took place the presentation of the Tibetan Version of the ‘PEN International. An Illustrated History’ for the Tibetan communities in exile. The first event of the day was organized by PEN Tibet Abroad in Dharamsala, where lives His Hollyness the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan institutions in exile, and it's as well the main office of PEN TIbet. In the picture we see members of its board holding an updated report on Tibetan writers in Prison and the PEN Centenary book. Translator Golok Chakmo, at the right and holding the book in this picture, translated texts into Tibetan and supervised the edition.

The banner of the event included the five main cases of the day for PEN International together with five cases of Tibetan writers in prison:

The book includes PEN Tibet among the PEN centres in exile who have shaped PEN International, in the tradition initiated by German PEN in Exile in 1934. Height centres in exile were sheltered in London in 1943 and received the support of English PEN's Refugee Fund.

The Tibetan chapter starts in the library of the ancient manuscripts in Dharamsala and underlines the continuity of Tibetan literature in Tibet and the diaspora after more than sixty years of Chinese occupation:

Tibetan writers and scholars participated actively in the drafting of the Universal Declaration of Linguistic Rights in Barcelona. The UDLR got the immediate support of HH the Dalai Lama. PEN Tibet Abroad was founded in 2000 and has actively participated in PEN International's assemblies of delegates.

Tibetan PEN smuggles books out of Tibet and publishes them in India, campaigns in support of Tibetan imprisoned writers and promotes Tibetan literature i all fields. In the picture, poet and singer Lhoudup Palsang, here wearing dark glasses, past president of PEN Tibetan Writers Abroad. On his left is Nyima Tso, sociologist and general secretary of the Centre. First on the right is Lokdun, vice-president and school director, and on his left, Buddha Kyab, fulltime children’s book writer for the network of Tibetan schools in exile. They all crossed the Himalayas, escaping from Tibet as teenagers.

This report by the Tibetan Centre for Human Rights and Democracy analyses the systematic replacement of Tibetan language by Mandarin Chinese in the schools of Tibet:

On November 15th, the day ended with the presentation of the Tibetan version of the PEN Centenary Book at Tibet House New York, with the participation Jennifer Clement, PEN president 2015-2021, reputed scholar Bob Thurman, translator Golok Chakmo and PEN Centenary director Carles Torner
The belly band of the book reads "100 years protecting the freedom of expression" in Tibetan —during 62 of those 100 years Tibet has been under severe repression of its freedom of expression and linguistic rights by the Chinese government.

Friday, 12 November 2021


Please join Interlink Publishing and the Massachusetts Review in celebrating 100 years of protecting freedom of expression and the launch of PEN’s Centenary book:

PEN International: An Illustrated History
Winner of the Motovun Best Book of the Year Award

Meet authors Jennifer Clement (President of PEN 2015-2021) and Carles Torner (PEN’s Executive Director 2014-2020 and Director of the PEN Centenary) and listen to them narrate stories of the 100 years of PEN’s evolution illustrating them with pictures, handwritten letters of prisoners, and other crucial PEN documents.

Date: Tuesday, November 16th
Time: 7:30 to 9:00 pm
Place: Integrated Learning Center (ILC), N151, UMass, Amherst
Free and open to the public. Masking and proof of vaccination required.

This event is organized by Interlink Publishing and the Massachusetts Review and co-sponsored by the followingThe Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, the MFA for Poets and Writers, the Program in Comparative Literature, Spanish and Portuguese Studies, and Catalan Studies, all at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

About the event
Interlink Publishing invites you to the book launch of PEN: An Illustrated History. This lavishly-illustrated and beautifully-designed volume tells the extraordinary story of how PEN International has placed the celebration of literature and the defense of free speech at the center of humanity’s struggle against repression since 1921. The book takes the reader through the key moments of PEN’s history over the last 100 years, in 320 pages and more than 500 pictures, letters, documents, posters and maps. From opposing book-burning and the persecution of writers in Nazi Germany, to supporting imprisoned writers across the world today, PEN has worked to safeguard against all kinds of censorship and self-censorship. The extraordinary writers who have been PEN cases include: Federico García Lorca, Stefan Zweig, Musine Kokalari, Wole Soyinka, Salman Rushdie, Ngugi wa Thiong’o, Anna Politkovskaya, Hrant Dink, Svetlana Alexievich and many others.

Wednesday, 10 November 2021



On November 15th the Tibetan version of the book will be presented at Tibet House. PEN Tibet will be joining life streamed from Dharamsala. It will be a hybrid event, with a panel at Tibet House and life streamed interventions. Golok Chakmo, Foreign Secretary of PEN Tibet Abroad, will be joining the conversation from Dharamsala

Here is the link :



On November 17th we will have two events to launch the book in New York. At 5:30 pm, at CUNY's Centre for the Humanities, there will be a book presentation followed by Q&A with the audience. It will be a fully digital event. Please register here

And after the event at CUNY we will have a party to celebrate the book together with the American publisher of the book. Everyone is invited to the celebrate.

Monday, 1 November 2021


At the Frankfurt Book Fair, PEN's Centenary Book was awarded as BEST MOTOVUN BOOK 2021 by the first Kiran-and-Pramod-Award —Best Book of the Year in all categories and by unanimity of the judges.

Published as part of PEN International's Centenary celebrations, PEN International. An Illustrated History is the extraordinary story of how PEN has placed the celebration of literature and the defence of free speech at the centre of humanity's struggle against repression since 1921. Edited by Carles Torner and Jan Martens, the book takes the reader through the key moments of PEN's history over the last 100 years, in 320 pages and more than 500 pictures, letters, documents, posters and maps.  The authors are Ginevra Avalle, Jennifer Clement, Peter McDonald, Rachel Potter, Carles Torner and Laetitia Zecchini.

To commemorate its 40th anniversary, Roli Books had instituted the Kiran and Pramod Kapoor Best Book Award under the aegis of the Motovun Group on International Publishers. The award is to recognise excellence in publishing and celebrate close cooperation among the publishing fraternity. The first award was presented on October 19 during the Frankfurt Book Fair.

Three days after the award was announced in Frankfurt, both editors of the book met in Brussels at the home of Jan Martens to celebrate the award with friends and with the whole PEN and MGIP communities.