Edition 5

Welcome back to The Dilettante. The theme of edition five is: rebellion.

The past several months—the whole year, really—have been a whirlwind of disaster, malaise, surrealism, and general madness. Between the global pandemic and the most recent civil rights movement, with plenty of bloodshed on domestic soil and beyond, the existence and maintenance of this publication have weighed heavy on my mind. What is the point of it, in the grand scheme of things? Does there need to be a point at all? 

Perhaps there doesn’t need to be a greater purpose. As artists, and as human beings, we need an outlet to stay sane. After being cooped inside for half a year, I’m sure we could all use a nice scream into the abyss. I encourage you to use this edition’s theme as a vehicle for releasing what is trapped within you, whether that be anger, sadness, hopelessness, optimism, or any other emotion under the sun. 

In a society that equates stoicism to strength, the simple act of emotional vulnerability and transparency is the first step towards the rebellion of oppressive institutions. The societal emphasis on quiet resilience as a show of strength is an insidious tool that acts to enforce silence and complacency. Emotionality is not weakness or irrationality. It’s a sign of our humanity. 

Rebellion doesn’t have to be a violent uprising; rather, rebellion is the way—big or small—you resist conformity and expectations. There’s no right or wrong way to rebel, so long as you express your discontentment. Make your thoughts known through whatever medium empowers you. The best act of rebellion is refusing to be anything but yourself.

Cover art by Colleen Hugo