At the moment I’m writing an article on zines about body norms and resistance. To get a variety of voices in my article, I’m looking for zinesters to participate in a survey. If you make zines which address issues such as abortion, age(ing)/ageism, body image and beauty standards, disability/ableism, gender/sexism, illness, LGBTQIA/phobia, menstruation, mental health, pregnancy/parenting, race/racism, sexuality, (sexual) violence, and other body-related identities/oppressions/issues or intersections of these, please get in touch!
The article will be published online on the website of Sophia, a support network for gender studies in Belgium. Last year, Sophia organised a conference called Unruly Bodies which invited researchers, activists, and artists to present their work on body norms and resistance in lectures, performances, exhibitions, and workshops. Soon, articles by those participants about their presentations will be published on their website. At the conference I set up a temporary zine library and zine workshop and this inspired me to find out more about zines talking about body-related issues.
I’m especially interested in ways zines can assist in resistance against body norms and oppression. If you would like to share your views, you can let me know and send me your answers to the following questions:
- Your name, pen name or pseudonym?
- Your preferred pronoun, age, country of residence/origin?
- Name of your zine(s)?
- How many zines have you made and how long have you been making zines? How did you first discover zines?
- Why do you make zines?
- How would you describe the zine(s) you make? Which themes/subjects do your address in your zine(s)?
- How do you address body-related issues/identities/oppressions in your zine(s)?
- What do you hope to achieve by making your zine(s) and writing about these issues?
- Does the distribution, community, and readership of zines have an impact on your content?
- Can zines be political or activist? If yes, in which way? If no, why not? Do you use your zines as a form of activism or political tool?
- What are the advantages of zines for you as a political tool and what are their limitations?
- Do you think zines can be used to criticise, question, break or bend society’s body norms and make space for those who do not fit in? Do you use zines for body norm resistance?
- Have you noticed or experienced the influence of society’s body norms in/on zines? Have you noticed (or contributed to) a creation of other/new/alternative norms?
- Do you use digital/online media such as blogs, youtube, social media…? Can you compare how you use them to how you use zines?
- What is your experience with reading zines which talk about body norms and resistance? Have they impacted or influenced you?
- Would you like to add anything?
I would be very grateful if you decide to participate in the questionnaire, and if you prefer, you don’t have to answer all of the questions. By answering the questions, I will assume you’re giving me permission to quote you for my article (unless you ask me not to). Please tell me if you prefer to be quoted anonymously. In case I would like to ask some additional questions or clarification of your answers, I will contact you again.
You can send your answers to: flapper_grrrl(at)yahoo.co.uk. Don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any questions. [I’ve been having some problems with yahoo, if it doesn’t work to send mails to my yahoo address, you can mail to: ninanijsten(at)gmail.com]
Thanks a lot for your participation!
More info about my own zines on my zine blog