12 American Publishers Sign Pledge to Fight Chinese Censorship

By Maryann Yin 

PENThe PEN American Center has recruited 12 American publishing houses to a pledge. According to the press release, these companies have sworn to “monitor and address incidents of censorship in Chinese translations of books by foreign authors.”

That means working “with authors and trusted Chinese editors to minimize excisions and changes in the translation and to ensure that authors can make a conscientious decision on how to respond to such censorship.” The full list of publishers include Archipelago Books, Beacon Press, Graywolf Press, Grove Atlantic, Hachette, Macmillan, New Directions Press, OR Books, Other Press, Penguin Random House, W.W. Norton, and Workman.

Last month, more than 40 writers joined forces with the PEN American Center to denounce China’s policies on freedom of expression. The group drafted a letter addressed to President Xi and focused on the troubles of four Chinese writers: Ilham Tohti, Gao Yu, Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia. The PEN American Center has posted the full piece on their website.