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Readers Circle

Pen International Readers Circle

If you are interested in joining the Readers Circle, please contact Sheila Bailey: sheila.bailey@pen-international.org | Tel.: +44 74 05 03 38

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Annual Membership in honour of outstanding PEN voices

The Readers Circle brings together those passionate about the power of the written word to support the essential work of PEN International in protecting freedom of expression and celebrating literature.

Literature and freedom of expression only exist because they are shared between the writers and the readers of the world. Together we are as mighty as the pen, we are stronger than the sword.

Level 1
Lorca / Koestler

$25
One year, single card payment
(Student Level)

$25 a year will help us to provide critical guidance and teaching materials for indigenous language education in the Philippines

FREDERICO GARCIA LORCA and ARTHUR KOESTLER: PEN’s first two emblematic cases. They were arrested in 1936 and 1937, during the Spanish civil war. Garcia Lorca was executed. Koestler was saved just before his execution. A tragedy and a victory. Both are reminders that PEN is built on the voluntary engagement of writers and readers around the world in the cause of literature and free expression.

What do you get:

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter

Level 2
Léopold Sédar Senghor

$100
One year, single card payment

$100 a year will help us to bring creative writing rehabilitation workshops to male and female prisoners across Uganda

LÉOPOLD SÉDAR SENGHOR (1906 – 2001): one of the great French Language poets of the XX Century, founder of PEN Senegalese. First African member of the Académie française, he was the first elected president of Senegal.

What do you get:

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter

Level 3
Victoria Ocampo

$250
One year, single card payment

$250 a year will help us to run literary workshops for young writers in the shanty towns of Buenos Aires

VICTORIA OCAMPO: From the mid-1930s to the 1960s she was the leading voice of Argentinian PEN and a force across Latin America, a relentless advocate for others.

What do you get:

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter

Level 4
Hu Shih

$500
One year, single card payment

$500 a year will allow us to support PEN Sierra Leone’s reading and writing clubs in schools devastated by the Ebola crisis

HU SHIH (PEN Wartime International Presidential Committee, 1941–1947): Led the revolution which opened written Chinese to the broader public.

What do you get:

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter

Level 5
H.G. Wells

$1,000
One year, single card payment

$1,000 a year will enable us to provide urgent assistance to secular bloggers under immediate threat in Bangladesh

H.G. WELLS (PEN International President, 1933–1936): Chaired the historic 1933 Dubrovnik Conference when PEN expelled Nazi sympathizers; the first international organization to take such a stand.

What do you get:

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter

Level 6
Anna Politkovskaya

$5,000
One year, single card payment

$5,000 will help us to find a place of safety for the ever growing number of persecuted writers and journalists forced to flee their own countries

ANNA POLITKOVSKAYA: PEN member, Russian journalist, writer and human rights activist. Her dedication to journalism, freedom of expression and justice was unwavering. She was assassinated in 2006.

What do you get:

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter

Level 7
Arthur Miller

$10,000
One year, single card payment

$10,000 a year will allow us to continue campaigning against the criminalisation of free expression across Africa

ARTHUR MILLER (PEN International President, 1965 -1969): Reached across the ideological barriers of the sixties to Pablo Neruda and others in order to show how literature could rise above politics.

What do you get:

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter

Level 8
Heinrich Böll

$25,000
One year, single card payment

$25,000 a year will allow us to apply pressure on governments and stakeholders in Latin America where the murder of journalists continues to go unpunished

HEINRICH BÖLL (PEN International President, 1971-1974): The German Nobel Prize winning novelist, was central to Alexander Solzhenitsyn’s arrival and life in the West.

What do you get

  • Readers Circle Membership pack
  • News about PEN events around the world which you may wish to attend
  • Quarterly Readers Circle newsletter