In Episode 55, we talk to USC student and Editor-in-Chief of PEWM Magazine Jephtha Prempeh about creating new spaces for marginalized voices, working in community, and forging paths outside of mainstream media outlets.
Jephtha is a multi-media artist from the Bronx. They will be returning this fall to finish their last year of studying NGOs and Social Change as well as Music Production at USC. Jephtha has pursued a multidisciplinary educational program including international relations, psychology, sociology, and anthropology– marrying these academic fields with audio engineering, dance, and vocal performance. Despite this immersion in their personal interests, Jephtha has returned to grassroots organisation and mobilisation, catalysed by the revitalisation of American civil rights politics in summer ’20. During this gap year they have brought together all their interests to found PEWM Visions, a rising media outlet. Acting as Editor-In-Chief and Creative Director, Jephtha organised the print debut of PEWM (Proud of Everything We Make) Magazine released this March, with its next issue set to come out in July.
Check out PEWM at pewmmag.com.
This episode was recorded on March 22, 2021. Because we recorded via Zoom, there may be occasional audio hiccups. Our theme song is “4 am” by Makaih Beats. You can subscribe to the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Stitcher and follow us on Twitter @WritingRemixPod.
“I think what I’m starting to realize has kind of defined my path over the years has really just been the way that I get in touch with the community.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“That’s kind of how I see myself now, more than anything else, is a storyteller.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“I don’t want to reform something that can’t be reformed.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“This magazine, this media outlet, this movement that I want to build around it, has come from the need to actually construct a new reality.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“I’ve got to take matters into my own hands rather than sitting around waiting for people to change it for me.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“Creating a new reality…does very much depend on grappling with what’s actually in front of you.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“It’s not about anything more than actually building community.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“I think people are so afraid of pairing logic with emotion. People are so afraid of understanding how logic can inform emotion and vice versa…Sometimes the clearest logic comes from massively internalizing emotion rather than pushing it out of the way.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“I am constantly code-switching, constantly thinking of how I’m being heard, being perceived, rather than [asking myself] am I saying the truth? And am I saying it in the way that’s most accessible to me?” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet
“[PEWM is] very meaningful for my understanding of how to continue to share knowledge with people and how to continue to circulate what I think is important about life but to also let that shift and change as I receive from other people.” -Jephtha Prempeh @PewwwmTweet