Volume 98, Number 3
The Fall issue features two standout portfolios: One is by reportorial illustrator George Butler, whose drawings document his time in Ukraine during the war with Russia, complemented by an essayistic journal that details his encounters with everyday Ukrainians navigating the trauma of conflict. The second portfolio is by photographer Brian Palmer, who shares a multiyear project illuminating the rich tradition at the heart of the Black funeral profession in America, which became profoundly important in the era of COVID-19. Other features include Ben Mauk’s essay on the origins of the plague and its evolution over time, while Eric Borsuk gives insight into the experience of finding his voice as a writer in an American prison. Clement Gelly and Oona Robertson contribute to the #VQRTrueStory project; columnists Jim Coan (Drawing It Out), Laura Kolbe (Art & the Archive), and Anuj Shrestha (Open Letter) return; there is fiction by A. J. Bermudez, Simon Han, and Carrie R. Moore; and poetry by Sylvie Baumgartel, Andrés Cerpa, John Freeman, Jordan Honeyblue, and Alyssa Jewell.
Volume 98, Number 2
The third installment of our biannual Summer fiction issue brings together an eclectic mix of stories showcasing a range of modes and voices, featuring fiction from the confessional to the surreal. All the stories here share a disposition to exercising different kinds of tension, which manifests in hard ethical choices, the impulse and consequences of betrayal, even a tension between realism and the fantastical. Complementing the special fiction section is an essay on the promises and shortcomings of English as a second language (in particular, as the language of new beginning for migrants in Europe) along with a photo portfolio on the unsettling sublimity of an evangelical mecca in the Ozarks.
Volume 98, Number 1
VQR’s Spring issue tends to coincide with a buoyant season. But just as the most recent surge of the coronavirus pandemic has ebbed, war has broken out in Europe. Anxieties are piling up, and yet people seem determined to step stubbornly into some semblance of an outdated normalcy. If anything, this spring is a conflicted and bittersweet season. The work herein—including Claire Rosen’s unforgettable cover image—embraces that tension. It’s a tension that animates Ellyn Gaydos’s feature essay on love, death, and life on a New York pig farm, where the brutal and the sublime intertwine daily. Conflicting sentiments run through other works: cruelty and tenderness in a boyhood memoir by Joseph Earl Thomas; Miranda Featherstone’s essayistic reflection on commitment in the face of agonizing losses; Ara Oshagan’s photo portfolio on disconnect and ritual among the Armenian diaspora; and a suite of fiction—by Karin Lin-Greenberg, Evgeniya Dame, and Gothataone Moeng—featuring familiar pasts fast dissolving into uncertain futures.