In January, Columbia College students and staff launched That Which Remains (TWR) Journal, a creative writing publication supported by the Eric H. Holder Jr. Initiative for Civil and Political Rights.
Through poetry, prose and visual art, TWR seeks to amplify works that unpack the social, political, gender and racial injustices experienced while living in the United States (read Volume One).
The student editors of TWR recently shared what drew them to work for the journal, what they hope readers take away from the experience and why writing is so vital to social justice movements.
Destiny Glover CC’22, Fiction Editor
Hometown: Columbus, Ohio
Major(s): Computer Science-Math and Creative Writing
Pronouns in Use: she/her
What inspired you to get involved with the TWR?
Last year, when the world was faced with blatant injustice much like we have seen before, being isolated in the pain of these racial injustices made the call to action even stronger. I wanted to use my voice to aid others in telling their stories, and I was blessed to have the opportunity to get involved with TWR at that time.
How does TWR fit into the larger work of the Holder Initiative? How does fiction work fit into social justice movements
TWR is a space, at its core, to feature the voices of those who live on the margins. We work to serve the unheard, much like the Holder Initiative. Fiction is often informed by our reality, as it may mirror our reality or act as an active departure. In both ways, fiction gives space on the page to tell stories that may otherwise be left untold.
Give us three words to describe how you hope people feel after reading TWR.
Inspired, Charged, Convicted.
Aneesah Ayub CC’21, Fiction Editor
Hometown: Queens, NY
Major(s): Political Science and Business Management
Pronouns in Use: she/her
How has Columbia College helped shape your interest in social justice and being a part of the TWR Journal's leadership?
Columbia College has fostered an environment where students can freely discuss some of the most difficult social, ethical, and moral questions in human history. One question that I frequently encountered as I navigated the Core Curriculum and my political theory courses was: What is justice? At the Holder Initiative, I am surrounded by passionate students, faculty, and scholars in residence who are attempting to answer this question while making a tangible impact on the lives of those living through injustice every single day. TWR is a space where I can help people tell their stories of injustice in an effort to create awareness, heal, and impact hearts and minds in hopes that one day, we can all strive for a form of justice that unifies and uplifts.
How does TWR fit into the larger work of the Holder Initiative? How does fiction work fit into social justice movements?
A key part of the Holder Initiative's mission is to engage in civic action outside of the classroom. We provide an inclusive platform for anyone that wants to discuss social, political, gender, and racial injustice. Volume One's cohort of writers is a testament to our dedication to amplifying each and every voice and experience: Writers include social justice activists such as Akemi Kochiyama, former NFL Pro player, Nnamdi Asomugha, fellow students, and incarcerated writers.
What did you learn from this opportunity and how do you see it influencing you moving forward?
I learned that, with the right group of people, you can achieve anything. I am so thankful to my fellow editorial board members, our faculty advisor, Chris Wolfe, and the Associate Director of the Holder Initiative, Beth Manchester, for giving us the freedom to take this idea and run with it. TWR has made me a better team member, a better writer, and has inspired me to use creative venues to tackle injustice.