July is International Zine Month
It's International Zine Month (July 21 is Zine Library Day!) and they are everywhere... the Zine Pavillion at ALA in Vegas, Brooklyn Zine Fest recently drew 2,763 attendees, a 20,000 title zine collection, purchased by Harvard University, An MTA Zine Residency and the Center for the BookArts upcoming exhibit Zines+ and the World of ABC No Rio..... clearly zines are flourishing!
NYPL’s collection of several hundred zines was started in the late 1990s and was built on iconic personal story zines like Cometbus and East Village Inky. Zines by library workers began cropping up around this time too and were quickly added. These share the experiences of library work, but from an alternative perspective then the usual library publications did. They include Library Bonnet, Browsing Room, Lower East Side Librarian, Zine Librarian Zine, Xerography Debt and more recently The Borough is My Library and Librarians and Archivists to Palestine. There's a synergy between zinesters and libraries that's reflected in the growth of zine collections (thanks Barnard Zine Library) and a broader understanding of zines' inherent research value as cultural, social, political documents that reflect voices not frequently heard in the mainstream.