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PEN America Blog

September 29, 2016

because in those days / our boys / the boys that were a part of me / of my life / were the ones who went to the slaughter / to slaughter and be slaughter / the smallest most forgettable generation of us / or who came back from the war like Paul Hidalgo / and drove his red Chevy truck one too many times into the cane / and was chased by state troopers / and dogs / barefoot / through it / his name tattooed across his back

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September 28, 2016

"For 10 years after Worm-Eaten Light was banned, Pavel couldn’t write poetry even if he’d wanted to because it had lost its meaning in new reality of normalization. Through my translation, he recovered that part of his original self he’d thought had been lost forever."

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September 27, 2016

"Since I can’t be the only cultural producer to fail to name the mechanism of their own silencing in the moment, this sets up an interesting possibility: that the suppression of political expression by figures of authority—a conservative definition of censorship—is not always recognizable."

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September 22, 2016

What this poet calls slippery, what I call smart. Like it matters, like I’m not / pulling rent money out of a dog’s ass. // I was wrong. I want everything. I want to be fucked like the wife who waited / for her soldier’s return, fucked: the island, the sand, the nymph, / the lust that strands him.

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September 21, 2016

Graphic artist Jennifer Camper, in a biting new comic, surveys critical reception of lesbians throughout literature.

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September 21, 2016

Make way for the Censor-ship, from which no comic artist is safe!

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September 21, 2016

"Of 260 respondents, 117 say they have had work published by someone else or a publishing house, or have published their own comics. Of our 117 respondents, 21 claim to have been censored and 96 claim they have not been censored. The following is a list of reasons why they believe they have been censored."

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September 21, 2016

How do we commonly define censorship? It depends who you ask. Here, artist and writer Anne Elizabeth Moore gives voice to the concerns of artists who claim to experience both soft and "economic" censorship.

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September 21, 2016

"I did not set out to write a definitive transgender book. I wrote and photographed six individuals, ages 16 to 22, who fall under the transgender umbrella. This left me wondering, why were six kids challenged for expressing who they are?"

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September 21, 2016

"In The Color Purple lies the truth, in its pages lie glorious, flammable ideas: how many fires could be lit with the simple, indomitable truth that a Black girl in the American South is human?"

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