Statement from The Cheuse Center Board: Salman Rushdie

Statement from The Cheuse Center Board: Salman Rushdie
Salman Rushdie

“…and if we turn away from posterity and pay attention to this dreadful moment, what can we usefully or effectively do? A poem will not stop a bullet. A novel cannot defuse a bomb. Not all satirists are heroes.

But we are not helpless. Even after Orpheus was torn to pieces, his severed head, floating down the river Hebrus, went on singing, reminding us that song is stronger than death. We can sing the truth and name the liars. We can stand in solidarity with our fellows on the front lines and magnify their voices by adding our own.” — Salman Rushdie

The Alan Cheuse International Writers Center stands in solidarity beside Salman Rushdie, condemning the violent attack on him on Friday August 12th, 2022, at an event where he was going to speak about America offering refuge to writers at risk. Rushdie has remained courageous in the face of decades of mortal threats, and we had hoped such a day would never come when he would be attacked so brutally. We owe so much to him for his ideas, voice and generosity and pray for his recovery. Freedom of speech and expression is a human right. Writers must be protected and nurtured, as Toni Morrison said so eloquently: “And it is right that such protection be initiated by other writers.” The Cheuse Center stands in solidarity to support our fellow writer in peril.

Statement made by the Advisory Board of The Alan Cheuse International Writers Center