This second foundational issue of liquid blackness: journal of aesthetics and black studies on “blackness,” and, more specifically, on the ways blackness indexes its own processes, was entirely conceived and executed under global duress: the COVID-19 pandemic, a viciously polarized election season in the United States, an attempted coup, and a second impeachment with the Senate's failure to convict justified on manufactured procedural grounds. Bookended by George Floyd's murder and a killing rampage at three Atlanta spas that yoked the basest orientalist fantasies to misogyny, this issue looks inward, toward black processes that insist that although white supremacy is the weather, it does not need to be our only ground.

In the face of this chaos—which made gathering and supporting authors, training students, and keeping deadlines particularly challenging—we reaffirmed our commitment to the importance of process. Using an immanent approach, we looked for formal principles within each contribution. In doing so, we identified archival tendencies across the essays, which the introduction highlights by focusing on a pivotal question within Okwui Okpokwasili's practice, Sitting on a Man's Head: What do you carry that also carries you?

We take this question also as an opportunity to think more deeply about the art, scholarship, and relationships that sustain us. We are grateful to our contributors and to the wonderful Duke University Press production team for working through this relentless assault to bring this issue to light. As we continue to define and conceptualize our journal structure (our “Studies in Black,” “Accent Marks,” and “In Conversation”), readers will find conversations taking place in different formats and styles. We invited Lisa Uddin and Michael Boyce Gillespie, editors of “Black One Shot,” to share the process that brought them to initiate their series for ASAP/J, another scholarly community that has supported the development of this journal. This issue also includes two long-form interviews, dialogues that are extensively theorized, curated, and, in their deep engagement with artistic bodies of work, archival. Finally, we also want to welcome and thank two new team members, Derrick Jones (artistically known as djones) and Alper Gobel, who have joined in the shared role of art directors.

We hope this issue carries you, as it has us.

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of a Creative Commons license (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0).