PEN World Voices Festival

PEN World Voices is America’s only international literary festival, attracting the best known writers from across the globe. Since our founding, we have presented more than 1,500 writers and artists from 118 countries speaking 56 languages in venues across New York City in a weeklong series of literary events with a human rights focus. The Festival was founded by Salman Rushdie, Esther Allen, and Michael Roberts in the aftermath of September 11, 2001, with the aim of broadening channels of dialogue between the United States and the world—a mission that, today, has never been more relevant.


Dates announced! The 2018 PEN World Voices Festival will run April 16-22.

Stay tuned for more details to come.


Highlights from the 2017 PEN World Voices Festival: Gender & Power

While some expected 2017 to be a year of ascendency for women at the upper echelons of political power, it risks instead becoming a time of retrenchment on rights. Taking place in New York City from May 1-7, 2017, the 13th annual PEN World Voices Festival used literature and the arts as a lens to examine how gender both enables and impairs full participation in politics and society. At a moment of unprecedented threats to freedom and truth—and of emboldened mobilization and resistance—the Festival brought together authors and artists from around the world with concerned citizens to examine bigotry, misogyny, and xenophobia, and to bolster the movement to counter them. Featuring Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Carrie Brownstein, Teju Cole, Ani DiFranco, Jennifer Egan, Aleksandar Hemon, Colum McCann, Nancy Morejón, Viet Thanh Nguyen, Trevor Noah, Salman Rushdie, Patti Smith, Andrew Solomon, Binyavanga Wainaina, and many more.