Celebrate the transformative power of the written word as 100 writers from 30 countries gather in New York for the 11th Annual PEN World Voices of International Literature, scheduled for May 4-10 at venues around New York City.
This year’s program, co-curated by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, takes you beyond the news by providing a rare chance to hear voices and perspectives from contemporary Africa and its diaspora. During the Festival, you can join in a wide range of debates, readings, workshops, and performances in venues from Lower Manhattan and Harlem to Brooklyn and the Bronx, and engage with emerging and established international authors in new and profound ways.
This year’s Festival includes writers, artists, academics, and activists from Senegal, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Kenya, Congo-Brazzaville, South Africa, Cameroon, and more. These writers’ work offers an entry point to discuss timely subjects, such as gender issues in Africa, and the role of the African diaspora, as well as important cultural phenomena including the publishing landscape and variations in important literary genres in different countries.
The Festival also includes a series of workshops open to the public. Visit the website for more information about locations and fees.
Introduction to Bookmaking Workshop: The Art of the Pamphlet Stitch: Whether you’re creating a book of poems or a personal journal, this hands-on workshop will give you the skills to make the book you want. Workshop participants will learn the pamphlet stitch, gain a basic understanding of paper weight and grain direction, and leave ready to make their own notebooks, zines, and chapbooks at home. This workshop runs from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 5.
Build Your Own Comic Workshop: Participants create a comic book for social change, under the tutelage of the artists behind the groundbreaking Priya’s Shakti. Lessons in character development, the fundamentals of storytelling, and the editing process come together as the newly minted comics are turned into animated GIFs and exhibited at City Lore’s gallery. This workshop runs from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. on May 5.
Writing Fiction from Memories with Chantel Acevedo: The Bronx Writers Center teams up with The Bronx Museum of the Arts and the PEN World Voices Festival to host two workshops for writers in one of the city’s most exciting institutions. Gain insights into Festival authors’ inspiration and methods, and take away some fresh ideas for your own writing. Co-presented with The Bronx Museum of the Arts and the Bronx Writers Center at the Bronx Council on the Arts. This workshop with Chantel Acevedo will explore writing fiction from memories. It runs from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. on May 7.
Click here for the 2015 World Voices Festival Anthology, A selection of new and previously published fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and dramatic writing from participants of this year’s PEN World Voices Festival, including work by Nathalie Handal, Zoe Pilger, Miroslav Penkov, Edwin Frank and translation by Margaret Carson. New pieces added every week.
Click here for a full schedule of all Festival events, including venues and fees.