Hi, and welcome to the first installment of Read a Zine! To celebrate and elevate the voices of indigenous peoples, this is a list of native zines for you to explore. Links of where to read or buy are included (most are $2-3), and if you are in the local area, all of the zines can be read at the Sarah Doyle Women’s Center.
1. The Nizhoni Beat: Native American Feminist Musings Vol. 1 by Melanie Fey and Amber McCrary
Started by two Navajo women, this beautiful, full color collage zine has so much (aesthetically-pleasing) realness packed in its pages it’s unbelievable, including some great pieces on indigenous feminism and coming out as gay. The authors are about to come out with their fourth zine, so keep a look out!
2. Movement Demands Autonomy! An O’Odham Perspective on Immigration and Border Controls by the O’Odham Solidarity Across Borders Collective
This zine offers an indigenous perspective on immigration policies and aggressive policing of the United States-Mexico border. The zine argues how aggressive border control is not only violent and colonial but a gross denial of tribal sovereignty. An important read. For more information, look here or purchase here from Brown Recluse (an all POC distro).
3. Everyone Calls Themselves an Ally Until It Is Time to Do Some Real Ally Shit by Xhopakelxhit
Xhopakelxhit, a member of Ancestral Pride (a grassroots native direct action organization from Ahousat territory), discusses how to actually be a anti-colonial, anti-capitalist, anti-racist white settler ally. Read the pdf here or purchase here.
4. Going Places #2: Powwow Country by Kesheena Doctor
Kesheena chronicles her experiences of attending powwows as a child and the cultural differences at different ones. It even includes a CD of Powwow music that makes this zine even more multidimensional! Other zines in the series include Going Places #1: The Realities of Being Native American and Going Places #3 A Native American in Education. Find it at Brown Recluse or here.
5. Women of the Pacific Issue #1 by J. Vehia Wheeler
This zine is based off of the zinester’s pretty awesome tumblr with the same topic. The zine profiles five badass native Pacific women: Princess Ruth Luka Keanolani Kauanahoahoa Keʻelikōlani, Bean Kaloni Tupou, Chantal Spitz, Melodie Turori, and Fu’una. Though not currently in stock, try to read it if you can!
6. ALWAYS WAS, ALWAYS WILL BE ABORIGINAL LAND
As the first page of this zine states, “The focus of this is the six years of the Northern Territory Intervention and its wider context of systemic displacement, dispossession and genocide of Aboriginal people in Australia. Since colonisation, the Australian Government has been responsible for acts such as the White Australia Policy, and the Stolen Generations, which has been recognised as genocide by international bodies. There are significant disparities in statistics regarding deaths in custody, health, life expectancy, literacy, education, income, welfare, and housing.” Compiled by a non-Aboriginal settler coloniser, the zine is composed of letters from members of the Aboriginal community and statistics on the genocide. This is a super important zine to read. Find it here.
7. The Thirteen Grandmothers: An Indigenous Guide to Peace by Daisy Salinas
Written by Daisy Salinas, self-described “Xicana feminist punk, community activist, & zinester,” “Thirteen Grandmothers” chronicles the stories of indigenous women from all over the world. This powerful zine connects people across cultures as they embrace native knowledges in order to heal themselves, the earth, and intergenerational trauma. . To learn more about the project and see a trailer for the documentary, check out forthenext7generations.com. The zine itself can be purchased here.