Daniela Capistrano, Mimi Thi Nguyen, Mariam Bastani, Osa Atoe, Anna Vo, and Cristy Road (l.-r.) gather at the Urbana Independent Media Center in Urbana, Illinois. Photo by Fiona I.B. Ngo.
In the beginning, Daniela Capistrano had no idea zines weren’t just for people of color. “In the late ’90s, when I was a teenager, I met a Mexican lesbian punk,” she says. “She was the first lesbian I ever met, and she had a bunch of zines in her studio. Almost all of them were by people of color. Since I had never encountered zines before, I thought that zines were mostly a POC thing.
“At that point I didn’t know anything about riot grrrl, I didn’t know much about punk culture; I was really naïve. As I became more involved in DIY-punk-feminist communities — not only making my own zines, but trading with people and trying to be a part of zine communities — white folks with a lot of privilege issues made it really difficult for me to be a part of those communities.”