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Arts in Society

Arts in Society

Arts in Society brings our previously siloed poetry and fiction—along with cultural criticism and belles lettres—into a common project. It focuses on how the arts—including the visual arts, theater, dance, and film—can speak directly to the most pressing political and civic concerns, including racism, inequality, poverty, demagoguery, sex- and gender-based violence, a disempowered electorate, and a collapsing natural world.

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Hazem Fahmy was a finalist for the 2019 Boston Review Annual Poetry Contest and this poem appeared in our arts anthology Allies.

Hazem Fahmy
Tess Liem Poetry
Tess Liem

The French Algerian writer steadfastly defended democracy and humanity against dogmatic ideologies of all stripes. We need to read and reread him today.

Mugambi Jouet
Julian K. Jarboe

“Come back, Sebastian. You are shaking. That is not a productive movement.” As Sebastian prepares to go work on the moon, he reviews his contract’s terms and conditions and wonders what his mother must think.

Jarboe Everyone on the Moon 2 Fiction
heidi andrea restrepo rhodes

I confess, I was never made
to shake obeisant . . .

Jessica Hudgins

“Aunt Steph got ugly after Gammy died, although people were often ugly to her first.” In this short story, a woman reflects on a series of charmed summers before loss descended.

Diana M. Chien

“Her sister was only visiting for as long as it took the mother to die.” A family reunion takes a surreal turn in this short story.

Alicia Mireles Christoff

I’m not Mexican, I’m Spanish
She meant I am better
than my Aztec-dark husband

Terrance Hayes

A series of creative reflections on why Yusef Komunyakaa remains one of our greatest living writers and what it means to be a Black Jazz Poet.

Tomás Q. Morín
Billy Anania Shellyne Rodriguez

Artist-activist Shellyne Rodriguez speaks with Billy Anania about museum labor practices and how Strike MoMA imagines a future of art for the people.

Bennet Bergman

We knew so little
about the plague
we underwent . . .

Jonathan Kirshner

The director made landmark contributions to three distinct art forms. His life reflected the American experience in the latter half of the twentieth century—both its failures and its feats.

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Sonia Sanchez 2
Christina Knight Sonia Sanchez

Popular Authors

Author of eleven published or forthcoming books, including Who Can Afford to Improvise?: James Baldwin and Black Music, the Lyric and the Listener. He is Distinguished Research Professor in the English Department and in the Institute for African American Studies at the University of Georgia.