- Editor’s Note
Las Américas Quarterly is the final special issue that will be produced with the editorial team of American Quarterly at the University of Southern California, and my last as editor (the final USC-based general issue of American Quarterly will be December 2014). Since July 1, 2014, all essays submitted to American Quarterly have been read and evaluated by the University of Hawai’i editorial team and the new AQ editor Mari Yoshihara, including for the next special issue, “Pacific Currents.”
I’d like to take this space and time to acknowledge the incredible intellectual work of the editorial team I’ve had the privilege of working with during my tenure as editor. The American Studies Association has always been an organization and a scholarly field dedicated to issues of labor. It seems fitting, then, that I mention the enormous labor—mostly volunteer and uncompensated—of the AQ editorial teams. First and foremost, the journal would simply have not been produced without the unbelievable commitment, skill, and willingness of my two managing editors, Jih-Fei Cheng and Nic John Ramos. Both are graduate students writing dissertations, and both took time away from crucial reading, writing, and thinking to go above and beyond the stated duties of the managing editor, ensuring that the journal was produced with quality scholarship, on time, and in an organized way. I am forever grateful to the two of them. The AQ Board of Managing Editors, from 2010 to 2014, included Daniel Widener, Shelley Streeby, Claire Jean Kim, Rosa-Linda Fregoso, Michael Steiner, Sarah Schrank, Josh Kun, George Lipsitz, Julie Sze, Richard Yarborough, Natalia Molina, Macarena Gómez-Barris, Jack Halberstam, Kara Keeling, and Tara McPherson; it was, quite simply, intellectually exhilarating to be in the same room with these amazing thinkers and activists, where we had measured and incisive discussions about scholarship and the state of American studies as an interdisciplinary field, and how we can reimagine the journal and what it could be for readers. The Board of Managing Editors, along with the broader Board of Advisory Editors, demonstrated time and again what important interdisciplinary work looks like and feels like, and importantly, what it can be in the future.
I would also like to acknowledge the hard work and crucial imagination of the two book review editors I’ve had the privilege of working with, Glenn [End Page v] Hendler and Cotten Seiler. AQ remains one of the (increasingly) few academic journals that features book reviews in print, which I personally feel remains an important way for our work to be considered and put in conversation with other scholarship. Hendler and Seiler have done a remarkable job in providing AQ readers with thoughtful, and expansive, review essays, demonstrating again the interdisciplinarity of our field. I also had the privilege of working with two very creative event review editors, Jennifer Doyle and Karen Tongson, who made sure that AQ did not simply represent American studies in traditional scholarship, but also in artistic and creative practices.
Though the editorial work involved in making publication decisions about submissions is in some ways the heart of the academic exercise of American Quarterly, the journal simply could not have been produced without the incredible support of staff in the American studies and ethnicity department at the University of Southern California. I would like to acknowledge in particular Jujuana Preston, Sonia Rodriguez, Kitty Lai, and Nayan Shah in the Department of American Studies and Ethnicity for their unwavering support of the journal even during trying times at USC. Larry Gross, at the Annenberg School for Communication, supported my editorship with course releases and general good advice. We also had the good fortune to benefit from the skill and willingness of uncompensated interns from the American studies department at California State University, Fullerton, who willingly spent hours on Los Angeles freeways to come to South Los Angeles and help out with the production of the journal. We have benefited from the openness and hard work by those at Johns Hopkins University Press, in particular, Brian Shea, Kris Zgorski, Lisa Klose, and especially Bill Breichner for his willingness to hear every request and...