Published in Overland Issue 238 Autumn 2020 · Uncategorized Introducing Overland 238 Evelyn Araluen and Jonathan Dunk In ‘Mental Ears and Poetic Work’ JH Prynne writes that “no poet has or can have clean hands, because clean hands are themselves a fundamental contradiction. Clean hands do no worthwhile work.” Resistance is the tenor of reality, and action in it is compromised, bloody-handed, in the world and of it. In some senses it can seem that an ever-larger stake of leftist discourse is consumed by a miserabilist scramble for seniority on a narrowing mesa of unhistorical piety. In the crisis of social, ethical, and ecological collapse that greets us daily, clean hands look more than ever like magical thinking. ‘It’s getting dark’, we wrote in our first editorial in December, at what would turn out to be only the cusp of an apocalyptic fire season; and then Covid, isolation, quarantine, the tumultuous end of the neoliberal dispensation. Society turns out to exist, says Boris, it has emerged from a coma in an abandoned soviet bunker, and slouches towards Bethlehem to be born. We invited writers, poets, activists and philosophers to think about radicalism for us, and the image that emerges seems to hover on the margins of possibility between an insubstantial mirage, and a possibility that reformulates itself daily. Justin Clemens has arranged a frenetic etymological poetics of critique. Elena Gomez confronts the question of an obscured Marxist-feminist poetics and concludes that it is inaccessible to the stand-point of dominant history, but she stitches the shapes of its possible absence with aphorism and ellipsis – do we find the radical fragmented in the pockets and lacunae of the ordinary? Joshua Mostafa’s ‘Practical Epiphanies’ arranges glimmers of its possibility in the transformative power of Badiou’s event. Moving from the possibility of radical hope to the prospect of hope as a radical possibility, Omer Wissman’s ‘Parallel Dimensional Man’ accelerates Marcuse’s consumer-ideology thesis into a parodic ‘heresphere’. Don’t ask where it goes, it goes where nowhere goes. Where rationalism looks increasingly like an exhausted tradition, other shores offer the responsibility of rooted presence, writes Clelia Rodriguez in ‘Radical Love’. Accurate thought is definitionally untimely, swinging a lantern into the absolute daybreak of the death of god, and aj Carruthers revivifies the possibility of prophecy in ‘Prognostications’. As the bushfires overturned perspective and ideology in a climax of ecological stupidity, so Micaela Sahhar shows us how the predicament of the Palestinian people foregrounds the starkly limited moral imagination of late capital, and its inability to confront climate change. Perhaps radicalism is a question of meaningful attention. The thirteen-year-old protagonist of In My Blood It Runs (2019) Dujuan Hoosan reminds us that radical can be something as simple as listening to what has always been there. Solidarity. Read the rest of Overland 238 If you enjoyed this piece, buy the issue Or subscribe and receive four brilliant issues for a year Evelyn Araluen Evelyn Araluen is a Goorie and Koori poet, researcher, and co-editor of Overland Literary Journal. Her Stella-prize-winning poetry collection DROPBEAR was published by UQP in 2021. She lectures in Literature and Creative Writing at Deakin University. More by Evelyn Araluen › Jonathan Dunk Jonathan Dunk is the co-editor of Overland and a widely published poet and scholar. He lives on Wurundjeri country. More by Jonathan Dunk › Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places. If you like this piece, or support Overland’s work in general, please subscribe or donate. Related articles & Essays 1 First published in Overland Issue 228 28 September 202328 September 2023 · Cartoons Ban cars from the city Sam Wallman Sam Wallman makes the case for closing the streets off one by one. 1 First published in Overland Issue 228 27 September 2023 · Sport When the sport circus comes on Country Jenny Fraser The next huckster in the carnival of sport is the upcoming 2032 Brisbane Olympic Games. If we want aspects of it to be in line with Aboriginal protocol, we need action from across the four winds of the world. If it’s not done right we need solidarity and protest just the same. We are each other’s safety net in this theatre of sport. As a senior Aboriginal woman activist once told me, ‘we are all only as good as we negotiate’.