A letter from the editors

Recent social and political movements have prompted discussion on a massive scale. The Black Lives Matter movement has called for changes to a country which permits institutional racism. Donald Trump’s supporters have argued for a country of ostracism, while his opponents shiver at the prospect of a dismal nation where equality is tossed away under the facade of greatness.

Such chaos coupled with classroom conversations led us to imagine what changes we’d make to society. What world would be our utopia? What would have to go wrong in order for the United States to become a dystopia? Do some people already view our nation as a lost cause? The more we thought about it, the more we wanted to know what teens had to say.

After hours of deliberation we formed Teen Writers Connect, a call for work operated by a team of Arts Connection’s staff and interns as well as by teen participants in the Freelancers program. Our theme was Authority in Our Present and Future Worlds and our description was as follows:

“Youth have the power to determine future political structures and create social justice. Create your ideal world that explores relationships between authority and the people in The United States. The world you create may be dreary, hopeful, animated or even dark. The relationship between authority and the people may be drastically different from our current society, or the same. Be sure to have fun with it. Remember it’s your world, so don’t be afraid to use your own voice and experiences.”

We also want to thank Keonna Hendrick for allowing us to publish Teen Writers Connect. After receiving multiple outstanding submissions, we are overjoyed to present the final product. The featured authors have diverse backgrounds, as is reflected by their wide array of dreams and fears. While reading the pieces, we hope that you consider the factors which could potentially enhance or destroy our world.

– Esmé Epstein and Sofia Lesnewski

View and download Teen Writers Connect here: teen-writers-connect-authority-in-our-present-and-future-worlds