Guernica Cancels an Inconvenient Essay (UPDATED)


Guernica, a non-profit journal publishing work at the intersection of art and politics, published a powerful essay by a literary interpreter working in Israel and her experience in the wake of October 7 and the resulting war between Israel and Hamas. The essay, “From the Edges of a Broken World,” by Joanna Chen, provides a first-hand account of how life has changed for the author. It is deeply personal, and perhaps challenging in that it does not hew to a “side” in the current conflict–and perhaps that was the problem. Not hewing to the proper side’s perspective, the essay was too challenging for some portion of Guernica‘s readership.

Although Guernica proclaims that it is “a home for singular voices, incisive ideas, and critical questions,” this essay apparently crossed the line. The article has been removed from the journal’s website. In its place reads the message: “Guernica regrets having published this piece, and has retracted it. A more fulsome explanation will follow.”

[Update: It appears the article was de-published after multiple members of Guernica‘s all-volunteer staff resigned over the decision to publish the essay. For explanations of why some editorial and other staff felt they had to resign, see here, here, here, and here.]

Fortunately, there is an archived version of the piece available here. Give it a read and then ponder how this piece could be so objectionable that it needed to be de-published–not merely criticized or challenged, but actually removed.

A current fundraising appeal on the Guernica website declares: “At Guernica, we’ve spent the last 15 years producing uncompromising journalism.” After de-publishing the essay, that appeal may need to be taken down too.

#Guernica #Cancels #Inconvenient #Essay #UPDATED

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *