Courtesy of Peter Stine
Witness blends the features of a literary and an issue-oriented magazine to highlight the role of the modern writer as witness to his or her times. Launched in Detroit in 1987, the magazine is best known for showcasing work that defines its historical moment; special issues have focused on political oppression, religion, the natural world, crime, aging, civil rights, love, ethnic America, and exile. The issues “New Nature Writing,” “The Sixties,” “Sports in America,” and “The Best of Witness, 1987 – 2004” eventually appeared as university press anthologies.In 2007, Witness moved to Black Mountain Institute at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. The magazine now publishes one special print issue and two general online issues each year and increasingly seeks out work that contextualizes the American experience by highlighting issues of global concern.