Tradition means something more than just doing the same things that people before you did with slight variations. Tradition provides a set of conventions and a set of expectations, and all of these can be reinterpreted and remolded and put to new uses. At Steel Toe Review, we strive to find literary and multimedia art that challenges and re-invents traditions.
Birmingham, Alabama is a natural home for such work. Anyone with knowledge of Birmingham’s history knows that it is in many ways not at all a traditional Southern city, and yet it has stubbornly held onto Southern traditions perhaps more than any other comparable city. Steel Toe Review belongs to Birmingham. It is created by Alabamians and inspired by the city itself.
Though Steel Toe Review is produced locally and has strong ties to a particular geographic area, we welcome submissions from the world over. Our intention is to provide a vehicle through which Alabama artists and artists from elsewhere can connect and find common ground.
As far as the name is concerned, we won’t pretend that Steel Toe has deep significance. Everything has to have a name. But Birmingham was founded as a steel mill town. And the idea of a steel toe appeals to our aging punk rocker sensibilities on several levels. It made sense to us at the time, and we’ve come too far to change it now. Another thing we learned, being from Birmingham sometimes means embracing your scars.
See submission guidelines for more information.