Summer 2016 - Main Page




It was with great deliberation that we settled on the Immigrant Writers theme for this issue of Ninth Letter’s Web Edition. For myself, and our editorial assistants, the value of immigrant voices was unquestionable; but we had to acknowledge that narrowing a pool of submitters is fraught, in the ways it defines, qualifies, excludes and guides. Readers, we hope this issue provokes for you the same degree of passion and difficulty we experienced while curating it. Whether focused on that nebulous thing called “the immigrant experience,” or topics unrelated, our writers had much to teach us, particularly about the borders we erect, and those we are bent on destroying. As well as those appearing in this issue, we have everyone who submitted to our call to thank for a truly enlightening editorial conversation, along with Jodee Stanley, Ninth Letter’s editor-in-chief. I would also be remiss if I didn’t honor our remarkable editorial assistants. They did not hold back, and their honesty taught me new ways to live and teach by the principles motivating my professional literary work. It was a privilege to take part in our discussions, and the process of assembling this issue. I am proud to present it to you.

—Natalie Mesnard

Editor: Natalie Mesnard

Editorial Assistants: Alan Avila, Frances Axtell, John Bochniak, Sam Degiacomo, Lean Freemon, Rebecca Greenlee, Ruth Haynes, Justin Isler, Jasmine Jackson, Kelly McEathron, Kenneth Miller, Olivia O'Sullivan, Abiola Okubadejo, Brittany Peterson, Darwin Rodgers, Deanna Schmitt, Sirnetra Scott, Jessica Sung


Illustrations by Bridget Rubins

Poetry by:

D. M. Aderibigbe, Anuradha Bhowmik, Letisia Cruz, Farah Ghafoor, Su Hwang, Karen An-Hwei Lee, Yael Massen, Natalia Theodoridou, Jessica Yuan


Fiction by:

Rudy Ruiz, Eshani Surya


Creative Nonfiction by:

S. Isabel Choi, Grace Loh Prasad, Zhanna Slor, Anthony Veasna So, Qinglan Wang

  © Ninth Letter, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.