By now you’ve probably already heard that our friends at the POC (People of Color) Zine Project are leaving for a 14-day tour starting today. We couldn’t be more excited.
In November 2011, we partnered with POC Zine Project and Barnard Zine Library to produce “Meet Me at the Race Riot: People of Color in Zines from 1990-Today,” a panel and corresponding zine show at Barnard College. After the event, Daniela Capistrano, founder of POC Zine Project, immediately started planning their 2012 tour, Race Riot!, with fellow Meet Me at the Race Riot participants Mimi Thi Nguyen and Osa Atoe. The tour kicks off tonight at 538 Johnson and returns to Brooklyn on October 7th to close the tour at Death by Audio.
The tour will consist of “DIY” events (like the kickoff this evening) featuring bands, music, and readers, as well as school-sponsored panels, bringing POC zines into the university. For a preview, see a video of our Meet Me at the Race Riot event produced by Barnard.
We at For the Birds have been busy making copies of Mimi Nguyen’s Race Riot zines to accompany the zinesters on their tour, and we’ll be sending copies of our own zine So You Want to Start a Feminist Collective… and International Girl Gang Underground to join them!
POC Zine Project has been spotlighting all of the members of the tour on their tumblr. Here are some of our favorite quotes:
I think that being able to tour & travel has helped me deal with how white punk can be because I’ve been able to make connections with black & brown punks all over the country and even internationally.
Even though zines are largely seen as either a literary art form or as a “music thing,” imagine the transformative nature that zines could have in all aspects of our lives? The power of narratives being read straight from the pens of those living them with out fear of persecution within and outside of their own community, or, inversely, the recognition of a POC voice within their community and power lying in the ease in which a zine can be created—we don’t need anyone’s publishing money, we don’t need anyone’s approval.
I wanted to go on this tour… to connect with other punks of color about this thing we love and sometimes hate, to present something –a zine, a tour— that might make sense of that push and pull and give it a history, and then to create something new between us.
Emphasizing the voices of POC in Zine culture (and any media) is imperative to revolutionizing any “alternative” space. If diversity isn’t present we aren’t moving forward.
I decided to join the [POC Zine Project] tour because I thought it was an awesome opportunity to hang out with women of colour who I could hopefully talk to about things that I think about alot, but don’t necessarily get to talk about that much in the communities and cities that I live in! I’m working on the third issue of my punk zine Fix My Head, which is a collection of interviews with “Punx of Colour,” mostly women who have been playing in hardcore/punk bands for some time, and their experiences of racism/fetishisation/exclusion/etc.