Founded in 1922, PEN American Center is a community of 4,000 U.S. writers working to bring down barriers to free expression worldwide. Its distinguished members carry on the achievements in literature and advancement of human rights of such past members as Langston Hughes, Arthur Miller, and Susan Sontag. Among its many programs based on defending freedom of expression and facilitating the free and open exchange of ideas are the PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature, chaired by Colm Tóibín, which hosts writers from around the world each spring in New York for a cross-cultural celebration of the written word; and the PEN Prison Writing Program, which, founded in 1971 on the belief that writing can be restorative and rehabilitative, provides thousands of incarcerated men and women across the country with skilled writing teachers, audiences for their work, and copies of the Handbook for Writers in Prison. For more information visit www.pen.org.
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