***** To join INSNA, visit http://www.sfu.ca/~insna/ ***** the networking idea grows! Barry _____________________________________________________________________ Barry Wellman Professor of Sociology NetLab Director wellman at chass.utoronto.ca http://www.chass.utoronto.ca/~wellman Centre for Urban & Community Studies University of Toronto 455 Spadina Avenue Toronto Canada M5S 2G8 fax:+1-416-978-7162 _____________________________________________________________________ ---------- Forwarded message ---------- Date: Tue, 27 May 2003 12:33:46 -0400 From: Pen Office <[log in to unmask]> Subject: CALL to PEN Writer Members to become NETWORKERS READERS & WRITERS and The Writers in Exile Network is pleased to announce: CALL to PEN Writer Members to become NETWORKERS In response to recent READERS & WRITERS Calls for Participation, a significant number of newcomer writers with professional writing histories in their countries of origin will make contact with PEN over the next months. READERS & WRITERS is creating a new way for established PEN writer members to be active in the organization by taking on a Writers in Exile “Networker” role, inspired to some degree by the successful example of the Writers in Prison “Minder” role. A Writers in Exile “Networker” will become an intermediary for each new refugee writer member to get an anchor in PEN’s activities and in local literary communities. The Coordinator will match up pairs of writers from the point of view of location in Ontario, literary themes, languages spoken, etc. to facilitate an ongoing email correspondence, receive updates and collect bio materials for web posting. READERS & WRITERS is striving to create the first spokes of a network of writerly affiliations, so that Canadian writers and exiled writers can build a community dialogue about issues that are of central relevance to PEN’s work, as a phase of preparation for province-wide READERS & WRITERS literary events. Please see the Guidelines that follow for more details about the specific kind of volunteer involvement we are seeking from PEN writer members. Through the Networker mechanism, we are hoping that quite a few of the exiled writers we meet will be encouraged and prepared to take part as literary participants in events down the road, and to become involved in other program initiatives. We are also hoping that established Canadian PEN member writers will find satisfaction and community through this form of increased collaboration with PEN. READERS & WRITERS is PEN Canada’s new program of network building and public literary encounters in communities across Ontario to nurture public dialogue about freedom of expression, exile, immigration and resettlement, and the act of writing itself as refuge, resistance and re-imagination. With the generous support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation, READERS & WRITERS readings will begin in fall 2003 and continue with increased frequency through 2005. Each reading will present a roster of writers living in exile in Canada, established Canadian PEN member writers and local emerging writers to regional audiences, in affiliation with community libraries, educational institutions, art galleries, writers’ networks and local immigrant/ refugee support organizations. Writers in Exile “Networker” Guidelines READERS & WRITERS has evolved from the work of Writers in Prison and Writers in Exile Committees, as well as from literacy-based PEN programs in the U.S. and U.K. At the core of the program is a widespread outreach effort to bring refugees who self-identify as exiled writers into meaningful relationship with PEN Canada, literary networks and diverse audiences. Refugee writers who have not yet been in contact with PEN are being invited to become members and participate in this network-building program. Most exiles will not have had published work translated into English. Many will have only a working level of spoken and written English. Some will have experienced state intimidation, persecution, torture and/or imprisonment. Some will be outspoken writers, scholars, and/or journalists with some experience of public performance; others will be disinclined to speak in public. Many of them will be isolated, possibly working in a day-to-day job unrelated to their writing experience or ambitions. Many will be interested in sharing writing that has been written during years of passage from a situation of direct persecution to arriving and settling, to whatever extent has been possible, in Canada. (Since pilot program support is provincial, Networkers are sought first in Ontario.) INTRODUCTORY EMAIL CORRESPONDENCE You will be paired up for an introductory email dialogue with a new refugee PEN member writer, over a period of one month or so, in which hopefully a collegial exchange can develop about the writing life, how freedom of expression has been experienced or constrained, how you have each chosen your writing subjects, with reflections on home, identity, writing, literary community given particular life history and present circumstances, etc. During this phase, you can expect an exchange of perhaps two or three emails a week, more if suitable to both writers. You are asked to save the text of this initial correspondence and to forward it to the Coordinator after the first month or so. ASSISTING WITH EXILE CATALOGUE MATERIALS If this conversation proceeds well, you will be asked to assist the exiled writer to assemble a biographical text and writing sample for the online Catalogue of Writers in Exile. The biographical material needs to profile his/her writing history and experience, in a form that is both appropriate for academic institutions to survey and for literary presenters and general readers to read. This resource is being developed to create an accessible resource for libraries, educational institutions and municipalities to locate writers whom they may be interested in inviting for short-term or long-term residencies, class visits, chairs, fellowships, as well as to nurture the writer’s profile in Canada. Translation is a major issue with most of the exiles we meet. The process of readying basic bio and resume material can require a fair bit of care, generosity and thoroughness, and it is hoped that through a process of becoming familiar with each other, the two writers will be able to do a better job of preparing an accurate and useful profile than the Coordinator can do. Please visit the www.pencanada.ca to view the Catalogue of Writers in Exile as it is being developed. ASSESSING WRITERLY SKILLS AND NEEDS Based on your growing familiarity with the exiled writer, you will be asked to give feedback to the Coordinator on the skills and level of experience of the new refugee writer member, and help arrive at a profile of what sort of professional opportunity would best suit and assist him/her, so PEN can attempt to find such opportunities. Many times this will involve arriving at an idea about the translation needs of the exiled writer, in terms of his or her writing. PROVIDING INSIGHT INTO CANADIAN WRITING SCENE As part of your correspondence, you will be asked to share information about your local writing scene, and how the publishing and reading scene works, orienting the exiled writer to the way it all works in Canada. Every country has its different protocols and pathways. You will be able to give your correspondent a glimpse into Canadian standards and resources, including literary readings series, library locations, and writers’ hangouts in your locality. If the correspondence becomes friendly and there is mutual interest in meeting in person, you might wish to arrange to meet with the added possibility of introducing the exiled writer in person to aspects of the local writing community, i.e. accompanying them to a particular reading or lecture. In addition, several social events bringing together paired writers along with memberships of other writers’ organizations and human rights organizations will be hosted by READERS & WRITERS over the next year to extend and support these network-building efforts. EXTENDING THE COLLABORATION READERS & WRITERS is interested in several initiatives. Over time, we’d like to publish an anthology in which PEN member writers and exiled writers will engage with heritage sites, leading to site-specific writing opportunities; as well, we’d like to establish a writers’ retreat for exiles with established writer and senior exile mentors. Overall, we think it a good idea to cultivate a greater sense of connectedness among PEN members of all backgrounds and experience levels. Your support is welcome and deeply appreciated. If you are interested, please contact: Margaret Christakos, Outreach and Events Coordinator, READERS & WRITERS Email: [log in to unmask] Phone: 416-703-8448, ext 23 Mail: PEN Canada, 24 Ryerson Avenue, Suite 214, Toronto, Ontario M5T 2P3. (May 2003) NOTE: Please do not hit reply, instead send your email to Margaret Christakos at [log in to unmask] _____________________________________________________________________ SOCNET is a service of INSNA, the professional association for social network researchers (http://www.sfu.ca/~insna/). To unsubscribe, send an email message to [log in to unmask] containing the line UNSUBSCRIBE SOCNET in the body of the message.