Letter From the Editor-in-Chief

Dear Reader,

Before I disclose our newest issue’s theme and the many exciting things that we’ve been up to in 2020, I am delighted to share that we have welcomed a new comrade to the GUM family, our Science Editor Beth Leishman.

“Something in the Water” is an idiom which symbolises mass uniformity for an unidentified reason. When so many people act in such a similar manner, it seems the only logical explanation is that there’s something in the water we all consume from our taps. Naturally, a phrase like this has ominous undertones. In this issue, we consider the collective psyche of cult psychology, racism and low self-esteem – whilst  also examining the literal “somethings” in the water: microplastics in our oceans, trans folx difficulty in partaking in public swimming. We express this uniformity visually through an all blue issue, with this solitary colour deployed in the visual construction of the magazine. Our print shoot titled “Do You See Me?” explores matters of fluid identity and an abstract sense of visual clarity; reflecting notions of both feeling seen and seeing clearly. In this, our four models of different backgrounds unite to embody their own honest expressions of masculinity (a look, a touch, a stance).

Often things dwell below the surface and we’d rather not face them directly as ignorance seems easier. However, we need to firmly grasp the something and be critical of ourselves and our actions. In same way that we have all plunged together into collective obscurity, it is in that same togetherness that we must work to achieve collective clarity. Without water’s humble contribution, life as we know it would not exist. Thus, it is vital that we protect it and strive to clearly recognise what is tainting it, and therefore us. We hope that we have achieved this in our magazine, as we work together to make issues that are often ignored transparent.

Light and clarity,

Lynsay Holmes