by Emily Hanson
American Identities is the exploration of the fluidity and the multiplicity of the different identities that have created the world we live in. As assistant poetry editor for this issue, I will be screening poems that share unique identities, exploring the idea of what being an American means.
In this special issue we will explore all facets of what an identity can be and how it can complement and supplement other identities in order to create a functioning and working society. I am hoping that with this issue people will be open and free in expressing their unique take on what identities that they see and experience in daily observation and reflection. We are looking for perspectives that offer new and insightful takes on the way that identity works together to create a layered and colorful way to view the world.
American Identities to me creates a discourse that will aid all people in seeing the concerns and feelings of the people around them, creating a wider range of ideas that will lead people to be more empathetic and understanding of different experiences. The reason that we chose “identities” plural is to admit to the fact that there is no single American Identity. Instead, there is a richness in diversity and differing opinions, and this is what has created the culture that we live in today.
We want to represent all voices and opinions, and I will be looking for poems that showcase opinions and identities that are rooted in what it means to be an individual while living in a world that seems to be converging together more and more. I am not looking for any one single idea, I am looking for different identities that work together and create tension together. I am looking for identities that are changing and in transformation in a rapidly changing world. I am looking for identities that speak to who we are as a society and why we have many identities instead of one sole American Identity.
Visit our submissions page for more information.
Emily Hanson is the Assistant Poetry Editor for Rock & Sling.