Standing up for those who speak up

Around the world, writers, journalists, visual artists, filmmakers, musicians, actors, and other creative people are censored, harassed, imprisoned, or killed for speaking their minds or exercising their imaginations. Since 2001, Ithaca City of Asylum has welcomed at-risk writers and artists into the Ithaca community, connecting them with opportunities and helping them and their families meet the challenges of a new environment. Learn more.

Writers complete solidarity tour

Cities of Asylum celebration featured powerful personal testimonies from writers from Algeria, Nicaragua, Nigeria, and Russia who were forced to flee their homes to pursue their creative work. Learn more.

News & Events

ICOA condemns Rushdie attack

In a statement by board chair Gail Holst-Warhaft, Ithaca City of Asylum expresses it outrage and solidarity in the wake of the August 12 stabbing of author Salman Rushdie and City of Asylum leader Henry Reese.

Sept. 23: DISSIDENCE: Exiled writers on resistance and risk

City of Asylum writers in residence in Ithaca, Pittsburgh, and Detroit will share their experiences in “DISSIDENCE: Exiled Writers on Resistance and Risk” on Friday, September 23, 7 p.m. at the Community School of Music and Arts. Timed for Banned Books Week, the event also celebrates ICOA’s 20th birthday. 

The Forbidden Future: ICOA presents panel at Spring Writes festival

Russian dissident poet, novelist, and satirist Dmitry Bykov says societies need writers to help them imagine the future, but “the future is the most forbidden topic in my country.” On May 13, he joined Mark Lipovetsky, director of graduate studies at Columbia University’s Department of Slavic Languages, for a wide-ranging discussion on “The Forbidden Future: Literature and Journalism in Today’s Russia.” Barbara Adams moderated.