From darkness comes art
There is so much going on in the world that doesn’t make sense. From far away, we doomscroll on Instagram and check in with friends and family and take mental health days and pray for peace.
There is plenty going on here at home, too, in the bubble of business school. The scale of it does not compare, of course, but the pressures of day-to-day life as an MBA student pile up. The chaos of calendaring, the stress of recruiting, the unrelenting social pressures, the need to build yet another FIN model…the list goes on.
We are so lucky to be here, at Harvard Business School. But you’re not alone if you feel caught in an all-consuming, endlessly-confusing state of being. It is a difficult time to be a person in the world.
When everything gets muddled, how do you cope? I (Rory) turn to creative expression and consumption: writing letters and reading poetry, for example. Others do, too. In turbulent times, artistic activity (and interest in art) surges. In a 2015 essay for The Nation, Toni Morrison wrote of her belief that artists must not remain silent in times of dread: “This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal.” Patrick Moore, director of The Andy Warhol Museum, said in a 2020 interview that in times of crisis, “Art plays a role, perhaps similar to religion, in that it helps us understand things that are too big to understand.” Morrison and Moore refer to presidential elections and pandemics, respectively, but their thoughts can be applied more broadly to any collective moment of crisis or confusion. And we’ve tried to apply them here.
The Harbus has never been a daily paper. In recent years, operating on a monthly publication schedule has meant we function less like a newspaper and more like a magazine – a source for opinions and ideas and profiles and reflections, rather than a source for the latest “news.”
In this issue, we have leaned into that, publishing new forms of art never before included in the Harbus. This month, you’ll find a satirical case and a longform film review and dozens of doodles and even a poem. We hope you find these pieces refreshing and renewing. Amidst the chaos, something different. A little bit of art.
Rory Finnegan (MBA ’24) is originally from New Jersey. She graduated from the University of Virginia with a degree in poetry writing in 2018. Prior to HBS, she worked in consulting and CEO communications in New York.
Edgard Mejico (MBA ’24) is originally from Lima, Peru. He graduated from Universidad del Pacifico, Peru with a degree in Business Engineering in 2016. Prior to the HBS MBA, he worked for six years in Brand Management and Sales in Colgate-Palmolive Latin America.