PEN South Africa is a branch of PEN International, a non-profit organisation that promotes literature and freedom of expression and is governed by the PEN Charter and the principles it embodies.
PEN SA’s work is needed now more than ever. Journalists – and particularly their right to practice and report freely – must be defended from the threat of governmental interference and other infringements on their professional integrity, both locally and globally. As part of our broader mission of protecting freedom of speech in South Africa, PEN SA also actively contributes to and engages with projects that address the continuing legacies of colonialism and apartheid. In addition, we are committed to strengthening relationships with other Centres on the African continent in order to share resources, develop exchanges of literature, and stand in solidarity with threatened freedoms in our respective jurisdictions.
Please consider becoming a PEN SA member or making a donation to help us in our advocacy, and contribute to building a strong and thriving network of writers in Southern Africa.
PEN SA welcomes new Professional Members at all times, whether poets, novelists, essayists, historians, playwrights, critics, translators, editors, journalists, screenwriters, or other literary workers.
To qualify for Professional Membership, you need to be a published writer (one literary work or more published by a recognised publisher; i.e. not self-published) or a person deemed by the committee to be recognised as of sufficient standing. Membership of PEN SA is open to all South Africans and members of SADC states. Non-South Africans who are permanent residents of South Africa are also eligible.
The committee is the final judge of any candidate for election to PEN SA. Candidates for membership are also required to agree to subscribe to the PEN Charter.
Professional membership dues are R280 per year ( additional bank charges may be incurred depending on the type of payment used and point of origin) .
If you are in agreement with the PEN Charter and would like to be considered for Professional Membership please e-mail PEN SA’s Centre Co-Ordinator with a literary CV, or other information pertaining to your history of publication, attached.
If you don’t qualify for PEN SA Professional Membership but would nonetheless like to support PEN SA’s work, then consider becoming a PEN Supporter Member.
Benefits include receiving our fortnightly newsletter with advocacy and literary news, as well as discounted entry to PEN SA events. Supporter Membership dues are R150 per year, (additional bank charges may be incurred depending on the type of payment used and point of origin).
If you are in agreement with the PEN Charter and would like to be considered for Supporter Membership please e-mail PEN SA’s Centre Co-Ordinator.
If you would like to make a once-off donation to support our work, please e-mail PEN SA’s Centre Co-Ordinator for payment options. PEN SA is a registered Non-Profit Organisation and donation receipts will be issued for income tax purposes.
Donations can also be made online using Payfast here.