This issue of Transnational Literature is the result of the fruitful collaboration between several universities and academics and is an apt illustration of its wide-encompassing theme: migration. Flinders University's Transnational Literature has not only generously offered the space for some of the most interesting papers presented at last year's Poetry and Poetics Symposium of the University of South Australia but materials submitted to the journal from around the globe have also been added, making this a truly multicultural issue, while at the same time scrutinising with academic acumen the topic at hand.
Professor Graeme Harper, Bangor University UK, was Guest Speaker at UniSA's 3rd Poetry and Poetics Symposium in May 2009. The symposium was held at the Migration Museum in a room packed full with writing enthusiasts (students, academics, writers from the community) who had come to hear or share poems and papers about migration. The theme of the symposium, 'Eight Generations of Experience', attracted many migrant writers who had a suitcase in their shed that had contained their own or their great-grandparents' belongings on arrival in Australia. They commented that they felt their stories had found an audience and also both humane and professional understanding. Professor Harper's Powerpoint presentation kept everyone in the room highly interested and motivated and we urge the journal readers to have a look at this paper which is a fairly accurate presentation of what the audience heard and appreciated on that night.
Poets from the community and from the universities read from their work, and academics presented papers and also read from their own creative work. Dr Jackie Cook's reality-based novel excerpt fascinated the audience and we hope will fascinate our journal readers too. We learned about the Italian migration from the paper presented by Dr Giancarlo Chiro and Dr Isobel Grave, and about the Chinese perspective from Dr Alice Healy. Dr Susan Bradley Smith's paper brings her own perspective on the issue of migration.
From the multitude of stories and poems received at the journal following TNL's call for submissions, the ones that stood out for us as editors were Hayley Katzen's story 'One Day You'll Thank Me', Loula Rodopoulos's poem 'Mbariam'; and David Tneh's poem 'Free spirit'. We invite the journal readers to engage with these fine writings and perhaps also let us know what their opinion is: we would certainly appreciate feedback about our migration-themed issue.
Last but not least, academics and postgraduate students have engaged again in the professional task of reviewing a multitude of books that we hope complement well our issue of Transnational Literature and respond to the thoughts, questions and sensibilities of many migrant journal readers throughout the globalised Internet world.
Dr Ioana Petrescu
Senior Lecturer, Writing and Creative Communication
University of South Australia