As you may have heard, PEN centers in the US, Canada, and China have come together to investigate the state of free expression in China, and have published their findings in a report: "Failing to Deliver: An Olympic-Year Report Card on Free Expression in China." PEN American Center is now following the cases of 51 writers in China, 44 of whom are currently incarcerated.
In order to raise awareness of the matter, PEN will be hosting an event on August 7 called “Breaking Down the Great Firewall: Silenced Writers Speak on the Eve of the Olympics,” which will feature new and previously untranslated statements and writings by several of these jailed writers, as well as other leading dissidents and members of the Independent Chinese PEN Center. We need help translating 10-12 pieces of writing, averaging 3-6 pages in length, for the event. These pieces include thoughts on the current state of free expression, experiences in prison and writing under the Great Firewall, and other statements by prominent writers. Translators are welcome to work anoymously, if that is their preference.
If you're interested, please contact Andrew Proctor, the Membership Director of PEN American Center, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 212 334 1660 × 101.
The image above is taken from a striking essay by Jed Perl over at The New Republic. Perl argues "that the global art world's burgeoning love affair with Mao and the Cultural Revolution makes a very neat fit with the current Chinese regime's efforts to sell itself as the authoritarian power that everybody can learn to love," and labels this convergence "a globalized political whitewash job, with artists and assorted collectors, dealers, and sycophants pouring a thick layer of avant-garde double-talk over the infernal decade of suffering, destruction, and death that Mao unleashed on his country in 1966."