On April 28, 2008, Toni Morrison accepted the PEN/Borders Literary Service Award at the PEN Literary Gala, held at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. She gave a poignant speech on the importance of freedom of expression, stating, “[Oppressive leaders’] methods include surveillance, censorship, arrest—even slaughter—of writers and journalists informing and disturbing the public; of writers unsettling, calling into question, taking another, deeper, look.”