Under New Management: A letter to the readership | Robbie Eginton | The Hypocrite Reader


Robbie Eginton

Under New Management: A letter to the readership


ISSUE 84 | INTERREGNUM | MAR 2018

Dear readership,

The Hypocrite Reader is under new management. My name is Robbie Eginton and I'll be the editor-in-chief. If you read no further, just read this:

  1. We'll be taking a two month hiatus while I put together my editorial team. You can expect the next full issue on May 1st. Click here for a two-question form that lets us send you a one-time reminder in May, so you don't forget we exist.
  2. You can expect other content before then -- in particular, expect a tide-over mini-issue with one-two features on April 1st.
  3. Thank you, deeply, to the outgoing editors Caroline Lemak Brickman, Michael Kinnucan, and Sam Feldman, for entrusting me with this remarkable publication and its seven-year legacy, and to all the editors, staff, and contributors from the past seven years. I'm deeply honored, and sensible of the responsibility. I'll do my best.

I feel I should talk briefly about who I am, but I'm afraid it will sound too much like a dating profile, and I've got enough of that going on in my life. So here are some demographics.

    Race: White
    Pronouns: they/them/their, as in "Don't look now, but they're watching you."
    Education: A. B. Harvard University, where I edited poetry for the Harvard Advocate
    Other occupations: poet, nonprofit worker
    Sexuality/gender: lesbian/the sound of a busy signal
    Languages: English, Russian
    Lives: in Iowa; on bread and salt
    Favorite element: air

For anything else, hack into my Gmail.

There are important things to be said, however, about what I mean to do with the magazine. It's worth noting that I don't think any of the following is a radical departure from what the Hypocrite Reader has been in the past.

I can't promise what our output will do for you, and it would be wrong for me to assume I know where you are on your path to understanding the world. But here are my intentions: that, for many of you, most of the time, the Hypocrite Reader will offer genuine humor, a relatable emotional account, a way of naming a part of the world for which you previously did not have a name, or vital information for understanding why things are the way they are. That our essays will be informative and analytical, even when they are reflective, personal, or unsure of their conclusions. That we will publish work meant for the enrichment of others, in a public language, despite understanding that to expect universality is to institutionalize a particular kind of official universal reader, and that demanding practicality at every turn impoverishes us. I want to publish useful writing and art, but when I say that, I have first to strip away the idea that "usefulness" (a) precludes loving beauty for its own sake, (b) restricts us to worldviews where there is a clear path forward, or (c) conflicts with the self-determination and flourishing of all experiencing beings that grow well in their own way. Useful things, in this sense, are whatever is solid and real enough that we can grab hold of them and use them to develop our souls, minds, and perceptual organs. Some things are more useful to certain people than to others; not coincidentally, some people have greater need of tools and even weapons. The Hypocrite Reader will reflect this. Art shouldn't merely suggest that we should think or feel certain things, but nor should it force them upon us. It should make feeling and thinking things possible.

Also, you can expect everything we publish to be poorly-concealed propaganda for the Russian and/or transgender agenda.

If I have your confidence, thank you; if I don't have it yet, I hope you'll stay around for a while and give me a chance to earn it, and if you do, thank you even more.

Yours,

Robbie Eginton