THE THIRTEENTH ISSUE

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Berlin Quarterly is a cultural journal with a global perspective that combines in-depth reportage, literature and visual culture.

Writer Emmeline Clein tackles Berlin Quarterly’s signature long- form reportage, researching the racist and scientifically misguided origins of the body mass index, and its policy and cultural legacies. Clein’s thorough historical research melds with sharp and timely cultural analysis, revisiting pop culture icons, fad diets, and the framing of the so-called “obesity epidemic”.

Throughout the issue, readers are called to witness moments of crisis through a chorus of genres. In This Night Has a Long Way to Go, Vikram Kapur’s dispatch from a locked down Delhi, the writer transcribes the unfurling tragedy around him, and the mundanity of continuing to teach writing over Zoom amidst his fear and grief. In La Mata, poet Eliana Hernandez eulogises the 2000 El Salido massacre, personifying the physical Colombian landscape to help tell of the unspeakable violence. Poet Logan February takes on a more personal form, using himself as a prism to explore social issues, including police corruption and debt, through verse. Marco Sconocchia’s photo portfolio captures an unhoused community in Rome, while, more fantastically, Brenda Peynado’s fiction What We Lost takes the form of a testimony, narrating as local townspeople begin to lose body parts one at a time.

The theme of the body appears again in Dear Senthurean, an excerpt from Akwaeke Emezi’s long awaited Black Spirit Memoir, and in Bora Chung’s Snare, a tale of blood and gold, presented here in both Korean and English. In the archive section, Camillo Golgi’s 19th- century medical illustrations return to the literal body, depicting nerves whose lines, at this magnitude, appear almost abstract.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Reportage

The Body Mass Index
by Emmeline Clein

Fiction
덫 (Snare)
by Bora Chung

Nonfiction
This Night Has a Long Way to Go
by Vikram Kapur

Poetry
Enough
by Logan February

Fiction
What We Lost
Brenda Peynado

Portfolio
Tevere Grand Hotel
by Marco Sconocchia

Poetry
La Mata (The Brush)
by Eliana Hernández

Fiction
Delirium
by Mahi Binebine

Nonfiction
Gore | Dear Senthuran
by Akwaeke Emezi

Poetry
Night Falls
by Lynn Xu

Archive
Nervous System
by Camillo Golgi

 

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WINTER 2021