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PEN World Voices Festival 2013

Assembling academics, writers, philosophers, and great thinkers the world over, the 9th Annual PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature (April 29 – May 5, 2013, various venues) is like an intellectual version of the Avengers, just substitute fighting aliens with contemplating the human condition. An open letter written by the festival organizers states that PEN World Voices brings “remarkable writers, journalists, philosophers from all over the world to our City, where we discuss and debate some of the most sensitive issues of our lives today.”

Speakers at the festival include:

  • Judith Butler
  • Eduardo Galeano
  • Joy Harjo
  • Aleksandar Hemon
  • Jamaica Kincaid
  • Ursula Krechel
  • Fran Lebowitz
  • Claudio Magris
  • Pierre Michon
  • Téa Obreht
  • Salman Rushdie
  • Sapphire
  • Charles Simic
  • Naomi Wolf

The opening night (April 29) lecture on bravery in arts, politics, and society and is hosted by comedian Baratunde Thurston, formerly ofThe Onion and author of the New York Times bestseller How To Be Black.

PEN World has several lecture series on various topics, including obsession and the role it plays in the creative process (Naomi Wolf on Truth) and workshops for aspiring artists and writers (What the Wu-Tang Clan Tells Us About Political Publishing with Bhaskar Sunkara).

One of the more unusual events is The Quiet Volume, a performance conducted by Ant Hampton and Tim Etchells, which is described as “A self-generated and ‘automatic’ performance, Autoteatro, for two at a time experienced in the reading room of a library, audience members sit side-by-side taking cues from words both written and whispered – via an iPod and headphones – and find themselves burrowing an unlikely path through a pile of books.”

As one of the most major literary events in New York, PEN World Voices offers a wide array of speakers and views, making it an engaging literary event on a global scale.

To learn more, go to:

PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature
April 29 – May 5, 2013

Various Venues

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