Irish PEN Award for Literature

In 1998 Irish PEN set up an award to honour an Irish-born writer who has made an outstanding contribution to Irish Literature. This Award is for a significant body of work, written and produced over a number of years, and is open to novelists, playwrights, poets, and scriptwriters.

Members of Irish PEN, as well as previous winners nominate and vote for the candidate. In keeping with the tradition started at the W.B. Yeats dinner in 1935, the writer is presented with the Award in the company of other writers at our annual dinner.

In 1999 the first Irish PEN Award was presented to John B. Keane.

PEN Award recipients:

1999 John B.Keane

2000 Brian Friel

2001 Edna O’Brien

2002 William Trevor

2003 John McGahern

2004 Neil Jordan

2005 Seamus Heaney

2006 Jennifer Johnston

2007 Maeve Binchy

2008 Thomas Kilroy

2009 Roddy Doyle

2010 Brendan Kennelly

2011 Colm Tobín

2012 Joseph O Connor

2013 John  Banville

2014 Frank McGuinness

2015 Éilís Ní Dhuibhne

2017 Anne Enright

Much-loved Maeve Binchy received the Irish PEN award in January 2007

Much-loved Maeve Binchy received the Irish PEN award in January 2007

Roddy Doyle, recipient of the Irish PEN award for literatire January 2009

Roddy Doyle, recipient of the Irish PEN award for literatire January 2009

Senator David Norris, Anne Hartigan and Brendan Kennelly, recipient of the Irish PEN lifetime achievement award for literature

Senator David Norris, Anne Hartigan and Brendan Kennelly, recipient of the Irish PEN lifetime achievement award for literature January 2010