What we do

Every year, hundreds of writers are imprisoned, persecuted, attacked, threatened, exiled or even murdered as a result of their work. We seek to defend and support them and their families, to pressurise governments where the right to freedom of expression is under attack, and to help bring about the necessary changes to make freedom of expression a reality around the world.

Writers at Risk

We campaign on behalf of writers and other literary professionals who are unjustly persecuted in violation of their right to freedom of expression.

Writers in Residence

Our residency programme is an extension of our long-standing work in support of writers around the world. We aim to support international writers facing persecution by providing them with the time, safety and funds to relax and work on their own projects.

“I get so many letters from PEN members... Perhaps this is why I never feel helpless.”

Zehra Doğan - Artist, journalist and English PEN Writer in Residence