In times of political contestation teeming with misinformation and fraught with charges of fake news, when the very notion of truth seems to be up for grabs, it is compelling to seek out writers whose work addresses politics, yet exceeds the constraints of journalism and the halls of public policymaking. It’s a good time to revisit and test Percy Bysshe Shelley’s 1821 claim that “poets are the unacknowledged legislators of the world.” This discussion about the social reach of writing in such arenas as environmental catastrophe and indigenous representation ponders the responsibility of the writer to act as citizen, extending the domain of citizenship beyond conventional legal and political realms, and to test the limits of citizenship as discourse, as its protections are being denied to increasing numbers of persons.

**This presentation is full.**