Focus Issues

Because many challenges to free expression transcend national and regional boundaries, PEN America looks at Focus Issues through a comparative lens to identify trends in free expression violations and strategies to address them in communities around the world. Read below to learn more about the prevailing threats to free expression today.

Distinct local contexts can shape threats to free expression and the resistance that challenge them. Learn more the conditions for free expression in our Focus Regions.

students in conversation around a table

Campus Free Speech

While free speech is alive and well on campus, it is not free from threats, and must be vigilantly guarded if its continued strength is to be assured. More

PEN America v. Trump

PEN America v. Trump

The suit seeks to stop President Trump from using the machinery of government to retaliate or threaten reprisals against journalists and media outlets for coverage he dislikes. More

Fake News Protestors

Fraudulent News

The proliferation of false information and rising distrust in the established news media, due in part to a deliberate campaign of denigration, pose a looming crisis for American democracy… More

Online Harassment Field Manual

Online Harassment

Online hate and harassment pose a growing threat to free expression. PEN America’s Online Harassment Field Manual and trainings equip writers, journalists, and all those active online with tools… More

The M Word: Muslim Americans Take the Mic

Follow us on Facebook!  For centuries, Muslim Americans have played a vital role in building America’s varied and inspiring cultural landscape. But throughout history, their voices have often been marginalized… More

Newsroom Transparency Tracker

Newsroom Transparency Tracker

PEN America and the Trust Project have partnered to create a first-of-its-kind digital tool that tracks the transparency of over 50 leading national and regional media outlets by surfacing… More