The Arthur Miller PEN America Freedom to Write Lecture


“We are trying to save writers’ lives.”   - Arthur Miller on PEN

“Named for the former PEN president and fierce defender of the freedom of expression, the annual Arthur Miller Freedom to Write Lecture is the culminating event of the week-long PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature and features leading voices addressing critical free expression challenges.”

Richard Flanagan’s 2021 lecture

More about Richard Flanagan at

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Explore the PEN America 2020 Digital World Voices Festival: “These Truths”

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2020: Nikole Hannah-Jones & the 1619 Project. [Event postponed.]  Visit NH-J’s site.

     The 1619 Project, The New York Times


      2019: Arundhati Roy

“Literature Provides Shelter.  That’s Why We Need it.”  The Guardian (abridged lecture)


      2018: Hillary Rodham Clinton


      2017:   Masha Gennen


      2016 Roxane Gay


      2015: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie


      2014: Colm Tóibín

“The Censor in Each of Us” The New Yorker (based on lecture)


      2013: Sonia Sotomayor


      2012: Salman Rushdie

“On Censorship” The New Yorker  (based on lecture)


      2011: Wole Soyinka


      2010: Christopher Hitchens


      2009:  Nawal El Saadawi


      2008: Umberto Eco


      2007: David Grossman

“Writing in the Dark” The New York Times Magazine (adapted from lecture)

“The writing cure” The Guardian (edited extract from lecture)


      2006: Orhan Pamuk (video unavailable)

“Freedom to Write” complete lecture text published by Prague Writers’ Festival and also in The New York Review of Book]


[author photos courtesy of]