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Welcome to Watermark, an annual scholarly journal published by graduate students in the Department of English at California State University, Long Beach.  We are dedicated to publishing original critical and theoretical essays concerned with literature of all genres and periods, as well as papers representing current issues in the fields of rhetoric and composition.  Reviews of current works of literary criticism are also featured  in Watermark.  As this journal is intended to provide a forum for emerging voices, only student work is considered for publication.

We are approaching a full decade of Watermark publications. All of the CSULB graduate students that have had a hand in forming and continuing the tradition should feel proud. This journal has given, to the members of this program, an opportunity to contribute their ideas. While also digesting the knowledge of fellow domestic and international graduate students. Watermark, over the course of its brief run, has published from around the globe. In these pages, you can travel the world, from local CSU’s to Indiana, Florida, New York … and then jump across the waters to London, Denmark, and Tawain. This current iteration has tried to take the opportunities given to us and expand on them. With that said, here is a word from the current managing editor.

Watermark 9 Editor’s Note

While the spirit of Watermark will always remain consistent, the flesh and guts carrying it forward, and the minds imagining it, evolve. Today’s ecology of scholarly writing brings patterns of necessary changes to the conditions within which thinkers think, and within which creators create. It is for this reason that we present Watermark 9 in a new kind of skin.

Today’s rain of innovation shifts accessibility, calling for increased visibility. To be viewable is to be accessible. In reaction to this pattern shift, the staff of this edition of Watermark has worked to increase the journal’s online presence tremendously. The waters from these rains have been channeled out, and the embankments they have rinsed down have yielded a river of visibility and accessibility — Watermark’s familiar spirit, progressing within new skin.

While washes of rain have driven Watermark forward through spaces, increasing visibility, the winds encountered along the way have lilted the journal forward through time. Integral to the healthy evolution of the flesh and guts carrying Watermark’s spirit is an awareness of tomorrow’s possible evolutionary nuances. To look ahead in time we decided to pull tomorrow into today. The staff of Watermark 9 is proud to have crafted the first edition of the journal with editorial contributions made by an undergraduate English student from CSULB. The unification from the interplay of the current generation with the next has yielded a new base camp, for future editions to come out of, that the elements of coming ecological patterns cannot mar.

Of course, not one instance of this progress could have been possible without the hard work and dedication of the staff members placing the puzzle pieces of the following pages together. The fruits of their labors emerged only from blossoms that were the guidance and contributions of our faculty advisor, Dr. George Hart; as well as the assistance of Lisa Beherendt, Doris Pintscher, and Christopher Knight; the departmental leadership of Dr. Eileen Klink; and the support provided to our staff by the entire English Department faculty at CSULB.

Levon Parseghian