The “new” Grand Rapids.

Don’t believe the hype.

It’s still a city built on stolen Anishnabek land, a city that has been historically dominated by a number of racial, class, and other divides, where so-called “struggle” is institutionalized and managed, and where the possibilities of something different seem so far.

This project is a small effort to spark a new conversation and a new direction. A collective of hearts beating for a different rhythm than the city. With an arsenal of commentary, critique, and ideas, we weave together narratives of old, possibly forgotten struggles with what we’re up against today.

We’re interested in what it means to live on this land at this time. We’re not interested in transposing theories and abstractions from afar, but actually looking around us. What are the forces—physical and immaterial—that shape the city? What could it be? Does it have to be this way?

Whether online or printed, text is an imperfect medium that can’t capture the intensity of real life. The real “conversation” is in the whispered words of insights gone unshared, the comments muttered under our breath, the collection of hunches and intuitions that explain everything with striking clarity, small acts of defiance, and the knowledge that there could be something more.