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Writers Circle

PEN Writers Circle member – Isabel Allende

Update - 9 December 2021

We are absolutely delighted to welcome Ben Okri, Jane Smiley, David Francis, M.G.Lord and Rita Gabis to the PEN International Writers Circle. Thank you all!

Without literature, there can be no meaningful freedom of expression. Without freedom of expression, there can be no meaningful literature...

Members of the PEN International Writers Circle are writers who believe that literature and freedom of expression are at the heart of a strong, vibrant society. They support PEN International’s activities to ensure that silenced, unheard and unknown voices are connected to readers and writers everywhere. The Writers Circle is essential to the ongoing success and continuation of our work.

The Writers Circle was launched publicly during the 81st PEN Congress in Québec City, October 2015. The launch received worldwide attention, including this piece in the Guardian.

Patrons of the Writers Circle pledge an annual gift - in one of three Tiers starting at $1,000 - which funds vital education, campaigning and protection work, and which safeguards PEN’s broader mission of advancing literature across borders and defending freedom of expression.

If you would like to find out more about membership of the Writers Circle, please send a message to Paul.

And read our Imagination Manifesto here!

  • Members
  • Hanan Al-Shaykh
  • Margaret Atwood
  • Hanan Awwad
  • Catherine Banner
  • Simon Beckett
  • Jennifer Clement
  • David Francis
  • Rita Gabis
  • Nina George
  • Arthur Golden
  • Hakan Günday
  • Karl Ove Knausgaard
  • David Lagercrantz
  • Eric Lax
  • Joanne Leedom-Ackerman
  • M. G. Lord
  • Geert Mak
  • Yann Martel
  • Vida Ognjenović
  • Ben Okri
  • Sofi Oksanen
  • Arya Rajam
  • Ian Rankin
  • John Ralston Saul
  • Bernhard Schlink
  • Jane Smiley
  • Burhan Sönmez
  • Frances Spurrier
  • Colm Tóibín
  • Yosef Wosk