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The Oxford American continues its twenty-fifth anniversary celebration with the magazine’s 98th issue, which includes the final installment in a series of excerpts from Jesmyn Ward’s new novel, Sing, Unburied, Sing.
Reflection on Southern history is a recurring theme in many stories in the fall issue. “It is an ongoing project,” editor Eliza Borné writes, “reckoning with our past, making the South a better place to live and dream and learn and work.”Jeanie Riess profiles New Orleans mayor Mitch Landrieu. In Jackson, Mississippi, Katie Gilbert follows the mayoral candidacy of activist Antar Chokwe Lumumba. In Little Rock, Arkansas, Frederick McKindra writes about black selfhood and the sixtieth anniversary of the desegregation of Central High School.
Music is also a recurrent subject: Jonathan Bernstein pays tribute to the Soul Clan, an overlooked supergroup. Michael Collins visits Pulitzer Prize–winning poet Yusef Komunyakaa’s favorite jazz club. In Nigeria, Osayi Endolyn witnesses a kind of jazz funeral procession for her father. David Ramsey mourns his wife’s father and considers family bonds and the music of Gary Stewart.
Other highlights: Danielle Chapman’s lyrical sketches of rural Tennessee; a journey to Cormac McCarthy’s Knoxville by Noah Gallagher Shannon; new poems from Rose McLarney, Kaveh Akbar, Bob Hicok, Jenny Browne, and Jacob Shores-Argüello; fiction by Amina Gautier and Kevin A. González; and much more!
The cover features Leo Touchet’s photograph of a New Orleans jazz funeral in 1969.