make collection policy explicitly trans inclusive

Despite what I wrote in my last post here, since our new Barnard hosted blog doesn't allow comments, we will occasionally need to have discussions here on LiveJournal or elsewhere. (btw note that we're also on Facebook with no log in required and Twitter)

Today's query is similar to one I posted in 2008 about adding zines on femme identity by people of all genders to our collection development policy. The revised policy states:

Barnard's zines are written by New York City and other urban women with an emphasis on zines by women of color. We collect zines on feminism and femme identity by people of all genders. A woman's gender is self-defined. The zines are personal and political publications on activism, anarchism, body image, third wave feminism, gender, parenting, queer community, riot grrrl, sexual assault, and other topics.

I now propose that we add in language to make explicit that we include zines by transgender authors in any state of presentation, identity, or transition. Anyone who has ever identified or been identified as a woman's zines will be informed by that identification and is therefore in scope for our collection.

But of course I am not trans, am not a gender studies expert, and am prone as anyone to write something incorrect or even insulting even as I try to do the right thing. So...I'm looking for help in crafting a new version of our collection statement. Please share your comments and suggestions on Facebook, LiveJournal, Twitter, via email or by any other method you can think of.

I'm also considering removing the first part of the statement, as the NYC and urban emphases haven't proved to be as important as I'd anticipated. Here's a draft: 
Barnard's zines are written by women and people of all transgender expression with an emphasis on zines by women and trans of color. We collect zines on feminism and femme identity by people of all genders. A woman's gender is self-defined. The zines are personal and political publications on activism, anarchism, body image, third wave feminism, gender, parenting, queer community, riot grrrl, sexual assault, and other topics.

Comment on it, or share a new one of your own!

Thanks, Jenna

Living Doll Disaster

Freshly cataloged -- Living Doll Disaster: Comix by Jennifer Whiteford

I love this short, full size minicomic with comics about: 

* sexism against women musicians

"When my ex-roommate went to try out electric [guitar]s she had a hard time getting noticed . . .
"After she tried a few and decided that they were crappy, the salesguy actually said, 'There now. Did you get that out of your system?'"

*Fleetwood Mac

* Jane Bond
. . .She's a librarian
. . .She's a superspy
. . .She's a female action hero!

* job hunting

"Hi! I was wondering if you'd like to pay me minimum wage and exploit both my neediness and my irrational fear of authority."
Picture of pirate ship captioned "Then, just as I was beginning to think that piracy was the only option" and pirate shouting "Give me all your vegetables!"

* assumptions about heteronormativity and more sexism

* things I don't ever want to hear again, including gems like
Well, I'm no feminist but . . . 
A women-only space? Isn't that just reverse discrimination?
You're a vegan? What do you eat?

* lots of things she's thankful for

Photo of the author wearing an awesomely awesome shirt: 

And I just requested that we order her book, Grrrl.

Thanks, Andrea Grimes and the San Francisco Public Library for donating this zine.

The Pop-Up Museum of Queer History

This event looks cool. I love things like this where people empower themselves rather than rely on institutions to create things like museums, libraries, and archives. I also love the pop-up/ephemeral nature of it.

The Pop-Up Museum of Queer History
Friday, January 14 at 5:00pm - January 15 at 12:00am

LocationStarr st house
207 Starr St.
Brooklyn, NY

More Info
The Pop-Up Museum of Queer History is an extravaganza of queer self-determination, a showcase of art "exhibits" on queer historical topics. We seek to realize our own representations of queer history, because in light of the recent censorship of David Wojnarovicz's work at the National Portrait Gallery, we cannot wait around for mainstream and heterosexual institutions to get it right. We look to each other for learning and self-education! We are compiling a resources list that all visitors can take home.

Doors open at 5pm
Free admission (This applies to all Quorum Forum events!)
Speakers and performances from 9-10pm

curated by Hugh Ryan and Buzz Slutzky


Stephen Kent Jusick
Ariel Federow
Heather M. Acs
Al Benkin
Jesse Geguzis
Quito Ziegler
Daniel Lang/Levitsky 
Davina Cohen
Hugh Ryan
Timothy McKeon
Buzz Slutzky
Elvis Bakaitis
Hadassah D'Luxe
Lauren Gulbrandsen
Bizzy Barefoot
John Parker
Tubby Lambergini
Sherley Camille Olopherne
David John Sokolowski
Nick Rice
Inbred Hybrid Collective
Will Rockwell and Christina Cicchelli, from $pread Magazine
Tim & Jason
Maria Helfrich & Katie Blouse
Kate Huh
J. Todd Fernandez
Tobaron Waxman
Charlie Demos & I.R. Marin
Najva Sol
Patrick Robbins & Misko Lencik-Inagaki
Amanda Kirkhuff

This art show will be the opening ceremony of QUORUM FORUM, which is a week and a half of FREE workshops, skillshares, screenings, performances and parties. To be held in queer homes around the city, January 14-23.

Fond Farewell from the Zine Library

As we are approaching our 11th hour of finals, the zine library wants to wish you a happy holiday break with some zine-related endeavors you might explore in your time off:

Before you go...
- Pick up the zine about bad-ass women from the Barnard Zine Club! It's available at the library reference desk, the Diana Center, and several dorms - but beware, copies are running out fast!

- Spend a few hours leafing through zines at the library! You're already there to study for finals anyway, why not take a short break and look at one of these fabulous zines about a gardening life, fat acceptance, or comical stalking.

When you're gone...
- Make a zine! Even a tiny one - zines range in size from a micro-mini made out of 1 sheet to a full 50-page print out. Let your creativity and your opinions fly by trying it out yourself!

- Buy/trade for zines! Having trouble coming up with a present for someone close to you? Want some independent media to read over the break? Try contacting zinesters, either through a letter, email, distro, Etsy or Microcosm Publishing. Here are just some of the places zinesters are distributing their work online:

Bee Lavender (zinester and author)

Greenwoman (zinester)

Marissa Falco (zinester and crafter)

The LaLa Theory

Microcosm Publishing (distributes zines from many different zinesters)

No matter whether you decide to screenprint, illustrate, and write your own 50 page zine or just loaf on the couch this winter break, the Barnard Zine Library wishes you a happy holiday and a great time away from school!

You're Not Alone

Ever been standing in the Barnard zine stacks and wonder: is this all there is?

I mean, sure, we all know about ZAPP (the Zine Archive and Publishing Project in Seattle), and that they sell zines at Bluestockings and The Strand, but have you ever wondered about other zine purveyors? How about distros? Or any other independent media location?

Well, believe it or not, there's a map for that.

This Google map contains information about individual zinesters, distros, libraries, and other zine resources the world over. Most of them are concentrated in the United States and Europe, with the occasional pin on a New Zealand or Australian location. In some ways, this illustrates where zines have become most popular - but it also shows the lack of information about zinesters that exists in the public realm.

So be recognized, zinesters! Email to be included on the map, whether you are an individual, distro, library or whatever else. And have a good time tracking down other zinesters with Google street view.

Zine of the Week: Best of Bright Year

You're alone. You're in the midst of writing a research paper, reading four different books for three different classes, and your head is about to explode. You know that you like to read, but this amount of work is just killing the drive to look at any more pieces of text. You feel like you haven't picked up a decent fiction in months.
A lot of Barnard/Columbia students are facing this same exact predicament. Lost in the pages of their sociology books, they lust after the brief pleasure of having time to sit down with a novel, memoir or short story and really enjoy reading again. But where would you get the time?

This is where the Best of Bright Year zine comes in.
This zine is a collection of well-written short personal essays by author Kirsten Major, where she talks about her life in short two or three page snippets. When I was reading this zine, I was struck by just how the writing was easy to read and connect with - there was never a dull moment. This zine goes over everything from relationships to philosophy and not without some good-natured irony along the way. It is the perfect antidote to your biochemistry homework.
Stop on by the second floor of the Barnard Library and check out the zine rack for Best of Bright Year this week, and get the full synopsis here.

Look Out! It's a Wild Zinester!

Have you ever been folding countless pieces of paper in a dimly lit room with your hard rock/metal/underground hip hop/80's pop music playing and thought about how lonely the life of a zinester can be? We spend hours and hours crafting our vision, pouring all our energies into the finished product that is another issue of our zine. And, although they are beautiful and wonderful, you may still wonder: who is going to read this?

Well, fear not! Before you go off to sulk, check out the website We Make Zines. We Make Zines is "a place for zinesters - writers and readers" that serves as an online community for anyone who has a profound passion for zines. They feature discussion forums, blogrolls, and member profiles for you to peruse should you want to find someone to trade zines with. And, if you're really ambitious, you can check out their event calendar which features zine events near your area.

For all of you who want to attend New York events, there are two really cool ones coming up post-Thanksgiving break.

The first is the Zinester's Guide to NYC Zine-vasion, which is being held at St. Mark's Bookshop in downtown Manhattan. There will be an introduction to zines by expert zinesters and book makers such as Esther Smith of How to Make Books fame and Ayun Halliday, the creator of the East Village Inky. This event is on Tuesday November 30th at 7-9pm.

The second is downtown at feminist bookstore Bluestockings on Sunday December 5th at 7-9pm. The Zinester's Guide to NYC Contributor Smackdown is, unfortunately, not a smackdown but a zine reading and potluck event with our very own Jenna Freedman and 8 other fabulous zinesters.

Check out We Make Zines and I hope to see you at either of these events!

Zine of the Week: At the Base of the Mountain

At the Base of the Mountain is a brilliant perzine about the struggles of one mixed-race Colombian/Caucasian American and her attempts at reconciling her lived experience with what others perceive her to be.
When I was reading this zine, I got caught up in the great writing that author Bella produces. It is a really accessible zine because Bella does not put up any pretenses: her experience is something to be looked at from the inside rather than a pretentious analysis.
In the zine, she talks about being mistaken for white in some places and for Colombian in others. She talks about living in a family where she appears different from her siblings and where she is sometimes judged for it. And, most importantly, she talks about how she deals with each of these issues in her own life. This self-described "herstory" touches on how society draws the line between "us" and "the other," prompting a lot of great ideas about diversity.
If you're looking for a jolly zine, this is not necessarily the place to go, but if you want to read something that is intriguing, accessible in its writing, and very pertinent to the idea of diversity, go for At the Base of the Mountain.

Check it out in the Barnard Library (for the call number, check out this CLIO record)

Bookbinding Workingshop Report Back

Jordan demonstrating a sewing technique (or was it stab?)In the spirit of celebrating badass women, several members of the zine club and their friends attended a fantastic bookbinding workshop taught by Jordan Alam, a sophomore at Barnard on Wednesday November 3. The workshop allowed zinesters both old and new to connect over cookies and juice boxes while learning valuable bookbinding techniques. The different book types that Jordan taught ranged from simple folded pamphlets to decorative Japanese Stab and allow even more creativity and variety in zine making. 

Speaking of zine making, the deadline for submissions for the Barnard Zine Club’s first zine about Badass Women has now been extended to November 15! The techniques that Jordan taught will certainly be put to use on it.  After all, nothing is more badass than a well put-together zine.--Juliana Strawn, BC '14

Olivia, Vanessa, and Juliana