Sometimes, it's good to return to your roots.
I spent an enlightening day perusing the Barnard College Zine Library, curated by research librarian, activist and zinester Jenna Freedman (with the help of awesome zine intern Melissa). I spent hours perusing the collection of "personal and political publications on activism, anarchism, body image, third wave feminism, gender, parenting, queer community, riot grrrl, sexual assault, and other topics," reading titles I'd heard so much about in my youth: Girlswirl, I'm So Fucking Beautiful, The Renegade's Handbook to Love and Sabotage, and so many more. Freedman works tirelessly to collect and preserve this "rich and democratic form of expression...to provide contemporary and future researchers a unique insight into today's feminist culture." It's incredible to handle so many passionate, creative works, handmade with love and toner, and I love that many libraries are beginning to archive zines in their own special collections so others may have this experience.
If you're a student researching third wave feminism and print culture, a first-time zinemaker looking for inspiration, or just someone wishing to reminisce about the glory days of Riot Grrl culture, set up an appointment to visit by emailing The Zine Librarian at zinesATbarnardDOTedu. (While you're at it, friend them on Livejournal and Facebook too.)
P.S. Some of the earliest issues of BUST are archived here, as well as FOB Ayun Halliday's East Village Inky. Check them out!
<3, Sort Of Intern Rie