Current Call

Fall/Winter 2023: Continuing the Marathon Through Reflection, Rest, and Resistance: A Call to Action

“You were not just born to center your entire existence on work and labor. You were born to heal, to grow, to be of service to yourself and community, to practice, to experiment, to create, to have space, to dream, and to connect.”

Tricia Hersey, Rest is Resistance: A Manifesto

“…Even in trying times like now, it’s like the world is in panic, but we gotta keep going. The marathon continues.”

Nipsey Hussle

How are you showing up for yourself? Your loved ones? Your students? In what ways are you fostering and centering your students’ dreams? What are your reflection, rest, and resistance practices? Collectively, as co-editors, we read, dream, and heal together. We retreat and pause because we must. We believe in the power of reflecting, resting, and resisting – even when the world is in panic. We chase joy and justice. In an ever-changing world and educational landscape, we recognize there is a sacredness to enacting the positioning of Tricia Hersey and Nipsey Hussle. In Rest is Resistance: A Manifesto, Hersey (2022) asserts our bodies are a site of liberation and that exhaustion does not honor the sacred. Furthermore, she suggests that rest is a healing portal to our deepest selves and is radical. Connected to this, we draw inspiration from the late hip hop artist, Nipsey Hussle’s, three words, “the marathon continues,” which initially graced the title of his 2011 mixtape. This year, as we celebrate 50 years of contributions from hip hop in various artforms, it is not lost on us its humble beginnings, and despite its monumental influence on all aspects of culture as a global phenomenon, its grandchildren and great-grandchildren continue to experience inequities in education, while navigating exhaustion, poverty, racism, and other societal ills.

We honor both Hersey and Hussle’s call to action to uplift ourselves, our communities, the young people we serve and teach, and to collectively resist systems that disregard and neglect our divinity. But as we look in communities, whether a school, a neighborhood, an organization, or an academic journal, how are we creating spaces that honor the humanity, culture, and lived experiences of those often unheard or marginalized?

In keeping with the theme of Michigan Council of Teachers of English (MCTE) Fall 2023 Conference, “Our Marathon Continues: Navigating Challenges and Reaching the Finish Line,” for our fall/winter issue, we invite submissions that consider the following:

    • How do we support the development of multiple and historical literacies (Muhammad, 2020) so that Nipsey Hussle’s words are interpreted as he originally intended, rather than a white-washed interpretation that promotes capitalism, white supremacy, and production?

    • What does it mean to be “about seeing long-term, seeing a vision, understanding nothing really worthwhile happens overnight” in education? In what ways are we pushing back on inhumane pacing guides in K-12 ELA classrooms and the other ways capitalism shows up in education, knowing “grind culture is violence”? How are we promoting rest, care, and healing, so we and our students can thrive?

    • How do educators interrogate the ways their personal histories perpetuate harm or promote healing in the classroom? How do we rest and heal ourselves in order to “be of service to yourself and community, to practice, to experiment, to create, to have space, to dream, and to connect”?

    • How do educators prioritize students’ histories and self-love in the English Language Arts classroom so students can “put things together” in meaningful ways and disrupt dominant systems?

    • How do we love ourselves, our students and their families, our communities, and our colleagues? What are the possibilities for how love can look in schools, colleges and universities, and community organizations? How can literacy and language support this kind of radical love?

Deadline: October 15, 2023