Let us start with a succinct definition of zine from Janice Radway, echoed across the academic literature: “Until zines emerged as digital forms, they were generally defined as handmade, noncommercial, irregularly issued, small-run, paper publications circulated by individuals participating in alternative, special-interest communities” (2011, 140). From here, the familiar story of the zine unfolds: the term zine is a recent derivation of fanzine, itself coined in the 1930s to refer to self-published magazines of science fiction, punks in the 1970s adopted the form to create an alternative infrastructure for a global phenomenon, and (some) girls and young women in the 1990s used zines to build a revolution of some kind—what kind exactly remains up for debate—upon a foundation of emotional intimacy and immediacy. Indeed, in academic studies and adjacent histories, the zine is most often heralded as a material form for the marginalized, as a medium of self-expression (without editors, advertisers, or censors) made through accessible means (using low-cost technologies of reproduction) in search of community (rather than audience) and infused with the tempo of immediacy, even urgency. These qualities of self-expression and community building are common themes for zine study, as found in Stephen Duncombe’s Notes from Underground (1997),...

This essay may be found on page 233 of the printed volume.

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