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PEN America at the 2018 Brooklyn Book Festival

This fall, PEN America is proud to take part in the 2018 annual Brooklyn Book Festival, with events across New York City.

Brooklyn Book Festival brings together the best and brightest of the literary world for the largest free literary event in New York City. The Festival features a week of Bookend events, and a Festival day with more than 300 authors and 250 booksellers, publishers, and literary organizations.

PEN America will present events tackling toxic masculinity and celebrating literature in translation. We’ll present an evening of performances scored by currently incarcerated artists and a panel who will discuss how we should deal with the art of the accused.

PEN America is thrilled to take part in this celebration of the literary community. Be sure to join us during the Festival for the chance to meet PEN America staff, learn more about our work, and to receive discounts on your Membership and PEN America publications.

The full schedule of events we are taking part in is below.

Stop by Booth #329 for discounted merchandise and to chat with our staff about the work PEN America does!


Not Invisible Today: Winners of PEN Translation Prizes
Jonathan Cohen, Pierre Joris, Tess Lewis, and Sandra Smith 
7:30pm-8:45pm
9/11/2018
WORD Bookstore 126 Franklin St. Brooklyn, NY 11222

The translators in our world who bring us translated literature are crucial to our understanding of word and art across all cultures and borders. Meet the translators behind prize-winning translations. Sponsored by PEN America’s Translation Committee and moderated by Committee member Jonathan Cohen, this program showcases three translators talking about translation and reading from their works. We will hear from Pierre Joris, 2005 Poetry in Translation Award winner for Lightduress (Paul Celan); Tess Lewis, 2017 PEN Translation Prize winner for her translation from German of Angel of Oblivion (Maja Haderlap); and Sandra Smith, 2007 PEN Translation Prize winner for Suite Française (Irène Némirovsky). Listen to these translators perform as writers and make the foreign familiar.

Break Out: Voices From the Inside 2018
Joshua Bennett, Ammayeah Benton, Sergio De La Pava, Baz Dreisinger, Brendan Kiely, Ian Manuel, and Jackie Wang
7pm-9pm
9/13/2018
ISSUE Project Room 22 Boerum Pl, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Join PEN America for an electric night of award-winning work from the 2018 Prison Writing Contest, staged by Joshua Bennett (The Sobbing School), emerging poet Ammayeah Benton, Sergio De La Pava (Lost Empress), Baz Dreisinger (Incarceration Nations), Brendan Kiely (Tradition, All American Boys), Ian Manuel (featured in Bryan Stevenson’s Just Mercy), Jackie Wang (Carceral Capitalism), and Rehabilitation Through the Arts’ alumni theater group. Currently incarcerated artists have been commissioned to score collaborative movement and song through Dances For Solidarity and Musicambia.

Toxic Masculinity: Where Do We Go From Here?
Yahdon Israel, Brendan Kiely, and Lynn Melnick
7pm-8pm
9/14/2018
Celeste Auditorium, NYPL Stephen A. Schwarzman Building 476 5th Ave, New York, NY 10018

PEN America and the Brooklyn Book Festival present “Toxic Masculinity: Where Do We Go From Here?” hosted by the New York Public Library. Brendan Kiely, author of recently released Tradition, Yahdon Israel, writer and creator of Literaryswag, and Lynn Melnick, author of the new poetry collection Landscape with Sex and Violence, will join in conversation to discuss the ways they as writers and activists have reckoned with #MeToo, toxic masculinity, rape culture, and privilege, as well as where they think we need to go from here. Panelists will consider the literary world and the roles authors and journalists have to play in giving voice to and supporting those who have been silenced and are now speaking up.

The Art of the Accused
Deborah Solomon, A. O. Scott, Tanya Selvaratnam, and Maggie Mustard
1pm-2pm
9/16/2018
250 Joralemon St, Brooklyn, NY 11201

William S. Burroughs shot his wife in a drunken haze. Louis-Ferdinand Céline was a vicious anti-Semite. Charlie Chaplin liked very young girls. Chuck Close has been accused of sexual misconduct, along with dozens of well-known artists and creative professionals since the #MeToo movement spread virally last October. How do we reckon with their work and the work of creatives throughout history with violent or contentious personal lives? Should their actions affect how we see the work? Should it color our reasons for engaging with it? These are the questions about power, spectatorship, violence, gender, labor, and media consumption—in, before, and after the year 2018—we must ask. Speakers will offer their insight and discuss their own experiences with the “art of the accused.” Supported by The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.


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