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Visual Statement: The Detroit Issue

By Erin Kirkland, Daily Photographer
and Marlene Lacasse, B-Side Editor
and Natasha Janardan, Daily Photographer
and Marissa McClain, Daily Photographer
Published February 5, 2013

DETROIT —

"I came to Detroit looking for my own story; instead I learned to better tell the stories of others.

As someone who spent my childhood listening to stories of others’ Detroit, I set out to participate in the University of Michigan’s Semester in Detroit Program in what I thought would be the opportunity for me to have my own story to share.

For me, there’s something so alluring and subtly elusive about nostalgia, a form of empty empathy, emotional curiosity.

Some of my greatest lessons this past summer came from watching and capturing Detroit. The people I met helped me even in a journalistic sense. For they allowed me to see both sides of the story, the importance of balancing Detroit’s past and present and they spared me from falling into the trap of getting lost in yellow-fringed photographs and patchy, golden family movies.

I’m glad I came here, because I found so much more than I was looking for. After all, everything is a story waiting to be told."

— ERIN KIRKLAND

"Detroit is an upcoming city with a bright social life. Students need to realize that it is a city of opportunity and development. There are many start-up companies that appeal to a variety of interests from the arts to science. They have great social events that are perfect for youth. I wish that people would get rid of their negative stigmas and see what Detroit has to offer."

— NATASHA JANARDAN