For decades, zines have given underrepresented communities an outlet to share their thoughts, opinions, and realities. These handmade booklets/DIY magazines can be adapted to fit any topic, but unlike magazines and Tumblr accounts, they are far more focused. It’s likely why, despite the rise of the internet, zines continue thriving.
Additionally, with mainstream magazines ignoring our stories, these publications are increasingly important. With that in mind, we rounded up four that place our stories at the forefront. From discussions of healing to shining a light on topics that you didn’t hear about growing up, here are four zines meant to empower our community.
Isabel Ann Castro and Natasha Hernandez started St. Sucia in 2014 to provide a publication that captures the conversations Latinas have behind closed doors. The words “a zine exposing what it is to be a mujer in contemporary society” are printed on the cover of each issue. And inside, it’s covering topics that are also told through our point of view.
“We’re printing stories about queer women, trans women, abuse, abortions,” Hernandez told Remezcla. “I didn’t think we were doing anything radical at first, but usually we’re reading or seeing those things from the perspective of white women. We’re giving Latina women a chance to talk about those things and bring attention to their stories. We need more of our narratives out there.”
Started by Daisy Salinas, Muchacha Fanzine is a “DIY Xicana feminist fanzine dedicated to promoting social consciousness and decolonizing minds.” With issues focusing on body positivity and celebrating brown queens, the zine covers a wide spectrum of topics.
In What to Keep, What to Give Away, Khristina Acosta touches on a multitude of topics, including survival tactics, abuse, and body image. Acosta shares her own personal experiences in this deeply poignant work.
Mujeristas Collective’s Nosotras zine looks at women’s relationship to their culture and identity. “I think an ever-present worry is that our work will be reduced to our identities,” Stephanie P. Aliaga told i-D. “Yes, our backgrounds heavily inform our work – the kind of art we create and how we choose to convey it. But there is no such thing as ‘the Latina experience,’ because there is no one way of experiencing Latinidad and being Latina.”