Here are some fat empowerment zines that can be found on the zine shelves at the LeFrak Center or deliverable from the Barnard Archives & Special Collections!
Zines can be borrowed from the stacks and checked out at the circulation desk. Several zines are only available in the non-circulating Barnard Archives and Special Collection. To request access to a zine, email firstname.lastname@example.org at least a week in advance of your visit; materials must be requested by 11 AM Thursday.
Body Image | Perzines | Health | Literary/Comics | Politics | DIY
Adderley, Sage. FAT-TASTIC: a compilation zine about loving your body. Olympia: n.p., 2010. Print.
This zine was created to share body-positive and fat-positive information. Topics covered include the media's treatment of fatness and thinness, a woman's letter to her body, and a mother's reflections on her daughter's sadness at being teased for her weight.
Durden, Krissy. Figure 8. Portland: Ponyboy Press, 2001. Print. BP
A self-identified fat woman, Krissy Durden advocates a size-positive body image for fat chick and debunks health myths surrounding obesity.
Lee, Brandi. Fat Grrrlz. Brooklyn: n.p., 2008. Print. BP
Fat Grrrlz! is a body love and size acceptance zine that takes apart the standard images of beauty in American society. Issue one of this political zine is part of Brandi's final project for a class at SUNY Purchase on riot grrrl. She includes an interview with Krissy Durden of Figure 8 zine and essays about her body image and activism. There are also art, illustrations, handwriting, self-portraits and reading recommendations. In the second issue, she interviews media activist Jessica Weiner.
Fat Girl Collective. Fat Girl: a zine for fat dykes and the women who want them. San Francisco: Fat Girl Publishing, n.d. Print.
The Fat Girl Collective publishes this zine appreciating fat dykes and speaking out against sizeism, homophobia, racism, and sexism. Each issue has articles discussing what it is to be fat and the support or lack of support that the contributors receive, as well as poems and photos, some of which are erotica. Issue 6 is the Bathing Suit issue.
Gion, Sarah. Fat Free: on a scale of one to ten...overweight. Jamestown: n.p., 199-?. Print.
This compilation zine brings together stories about body image. These personal essays are on topics such as being seen as too skinny, too fat, unfeminine, too hairy, or unable to look pretty without makeup. The writers (Mitsuko Roesmary Brooks, Ocean Capewell, Marissa Falco, Kismet, Theresa Molter, Ceci Moss, and Judy Panke) combat these societal judgments by sharing their own body acceptance and discussing how it feels to be judged by parents or schoolmates or people on the street. This zine contains clip art and hand-drawn comics. Some of the anecdotes are handwritten.
Gilbert, Rebecca. Verboslammed no. 8. Portland: n.p., 1996.
Issue 8 focuses on body image and fat positivity and includes an article from Nomy Lamm's zine, I'm So Fucking Beautiful. The cover is screenprinted; other visual elements are drawings, clip art, and zine ads.
Adderley, Sage. Marked Life No. 2: Philadelphia, Yo! Philadelphia: n.p., 2006. Print.
Philadelphia, Yo! is issue 2 of Marked for Life, a split zine with issue 30 of long-running zine No Better Voice. Sage, a homeschooling mother and zine distro proprietor, writes about her family's decision to move to Philadelphia from Georgia. She falls in love with the city, sees Elton John at a free concert, gets to spend more time with her family, and thinks about how cities do not hide the problems of poverty. She also includes photographs and ticket stubs from events she participated in and writes briefly about the Philly Zine Fest.
Lamm, Nomy. I’m so fucking beautiful. Olympia: n.p., 1993. Print.
Nomi writes of her anger and disillusionment with sizeism in this small, typewritten, and hand illustrated zine. She addresses issues of discrimination, ignorance, and "fat" jokes, and reclaims the word "fat" to refer to herself. Number one deals with her own feelings of discrimination as a fat woman, while number two and a half is dedicated to the perpetrators of fat oppression.
Lyons, Andie. Honest to god. Denver: n.p., September 2007. Print.
The concepts of truth, religion, and authority are documented in this issue of Already Too Much; Never Enough. In seven personal stories, 25-year-old theology student Andie recounts her experiences standing up to the cops, learning about faith, and reconciling liberal vegan politics with religion. This zine contains cut and paste images, handwritten pages, and lists. Assorted topics also include Christian punks, hitchhiking, and awkward relationships.
Lyons, Andie. Fat Girl (in and out of) love. Denver: n.p., September 2005. Print.
This perzine addresses fatphobia and addresses the politics of fat through the eyes of a bisexual vegan bicycle-riding fat girl. In essays, hand drawn illustrations and photographs, Andie speaks on sex, relationships and break-ups and shares her personal experiences with fat oppression and how even the most liberal of people have bought into the rhetoric of fat as evil. She also provides encouragement towards fat acceptance.
Lyons, Andie. Fat Girl at (and on top of) the kitchen table. Denver: n.p., 2006. Print.
In this issue, Andie and three of her friends write about "food, fat, [and] sex." In between four stories of both homo- and heterosexual sex as related to food, Andie writes about her experiences as a fat vegan and gives handwritten lists and recipes of her favorite foods. This perzine also includes photographs of her tattoos and Kelda the cat (Andie's "fat girl hero"). Kelly Shortandqueer contributed an essay to this zine.
Perez-Darby, Shannon. From here to there and back again. Denver: n.p., 2006. Print.
This perzine talks about being a fat, queer, biracial Latina and the discrimination that comes with each label. Shannon, a recovering bulimic, shares personal stories about intimacy and body image, Camptrans, and being stalked while she was an exchange student in Amsterdam. Visual images include photographs, photobooth photos, art, and clip art. Issue two addresses Shannon's difficult relationship with a man, discrimination for identifying as femme in both straight and queer communities, her personal fat politics, and how her Latina identity informs her being fat. This zine contains cut and paste and a photograph of author Shannon and her friend Andie Lyons, the author of Already Too Much, Never Enough showing off their stomach tattoos. Issue three was created after the author moved from Denver to Seattle, which she describes as "the catalyst [she's] needed to start thinking about some things in new and exciting ways." She discusses anti-capitalism, her relationship with God, her foray into the world of medication and self-care, and an update on her breakup. The author also looks at cultural appropriation and attending a fat positive event called Fat Girl Speaks '07.
Airborne, Max. Fat Farm. Oakland:n.p., 2004. Print.
Fat Farm is about a fat 13-year old's experienced in a mental hospital. Her family and therapist pressured her to be on a strict diet. This zine is hand-drawn and has an orange cover featuring a cow.
Sailor, Jami. Your Secretary, #5: the truth about your secretary. Chicago: n.p., 2010. Print.
Diagnosed in the fifth grade, Jami Sailor tells of her experience living with Type 2 diabetes in this solo installment of Your Secretary, which she usually publishes with another author as a split zine. She provides a glossary of diabetes terms, outlines her routine for taking care of herself, and describes the different effects that low and high blood sugar have on her body. This cut-and-paste zine contains hand drawn illustrations and collages of graphics.
Summers, Julie. Off the Beaten Path: 2004 Guide to Unusual Sources. Philomath: n.p., 2004
Julie, who identifies as someone prone to binge-eating, provides and reviews a list of sources related to controlling food consumption and understanding nutrition. She also explains her personal food-related weaknesses and what changes she has made in her life to feel better and be healthier. She emphasizes the importance of not associating being fat with being unhealthy. The zine is printed in very small font and includes a one-page comic.
Durden, Krissy. Imaginary Life: Current Resident. Portland: Ponyboy Press, 2004. Print.
This zine by Figure 8 author Krissy Durden contains photographs of houses with imagined stories about their residents on the facing page. There are also pictures and descriptions of mail order homes from a catalogue in 1918, and a picture of a house with no description that readers are invited to write and submit themselves.
Siciliano, Gina. So What?. Portland: n.p., n.d. Print.
This comic collection by Gina, a punk art school student, is a series of pieces about her life and friends. Each comic is annotated with its own narration as the author tackles riot grrrl issues such as sexual abuse and fat acceptance. Issue 6 includes a comic that was published in the PNCA comic collection.
Laura. Hairy legged man-hating feminist gazette. Iowa City: n.p., n.d. Print.
This typed political zine consists of comics starring Fat Chick, a fat feminist who speaks out against patriarchy, and rants about sexism perpetuated by society, especially in the media and by the government, particularly by Republicans and the Gingrich-headed Senate in the mid-90s. Welfare reform, rape, abuse, and body image are frequent targets of scorn, and the zine often references Thelma and Louise and advocates violent revolution and other cathartic modes of protest. Issue 3 is the White Men in Power Suck issue.
Fat Problem, the. Charleston: n.p., 2011. Print.
This handwritten zine seeks to debunk myths about weight through presenting different reasons why society shames fat people and deconstructing these arguments. It examines gendered discrimination and provides scenarios and solutions. Visual elements include collage, photographs, clip art, and illustrations.
Hartman, Crystal. Fat is Beautiful. S.I.: n.p., March 2006. Print.
This political zine deals with the social stigmas around being fat, reclaiming the word and offering examples, scientific facts, quotes, and statistics as to why society should accept fat people, including statistics on dieting and sex. It includes contributions from Laurie Ann Lepoff, Sondra Soloway, and an excerpt from "It's a Big Fat Revolution" by Nomy Lamm.
Sabrina. Two by four no. 1: On being fat. Houston: n.p., 2003. Print.
In this political zine, Sabrina discusses the implications of being overweight in a size-conscious society, such as the use of the term "plus size" and feeling guilty about eating. She includes "real" paper dolls, tips for fat sex, myths about overweight people debunked, and a webliography of fat-positive media.
Mr. Kate. I’m fat. You’re fat. We’re fat! A collaborative zine project. New York: n.p., 2008. Print.
This zine, created at a workshop on sizeism in February, 2008 is a compilation of handwritten and cut-and-paste pages by different authors examining fat and queer issues. Included are name tags of participants and a collage of fat, queer celebrities including Queen Latifah and Rosie O'Donnell.
Trinidad, Monica. On Struggling: #3 Bodies. Chicago: n.p., 2014. Print.
"On Struggling" is a collective zine project made by people of color with the intent of sharing personal narratives of struggle with culture, identity, white supremacy, mental health in our communities, modes of self-care and more. Their third zine is the Body Issue and features poems, illustrations, art, comics and prose on subjects of passing, race, gender, intersexuality, chronic pain, fatness, and queerness all from queer and trans people of color. Some of the content is in Spanish.
Rachel and Sari. Hoax #7: feminism and change. Baltimore: n.p., 2012. Print.
Hoax is a compilation zine created by Sari and Rachel that discusses feminism "in relation to different aspects of day-to-day life. The theme of issue 7 is "Change." The changes written about vary from changing the "call-out culture" associated with social rights activist groups to how it feels to change names as a trans* person. Contributors include personal accounts of Islamophobia in feminism, being trans* in the workplace, coping with bulimia while being feminist, parenting a daughter who practices self-harm, coping with a friend's death, questioning sexuality, being a survivor in workshops about consent, being a journalist in capitalist America, living with an alcoholic best friend, and empowering oneself by choosing a short haircut. There are articles on the importance of poetry in activism, trans-feminism, and the showmanship involved with primarily white volunteer organizations in communities composed mostly of people of color. There are two interviews in the zine: one with trans* rights lawyer Dean Spade about working in the nonprofit Sylvia Rivera Law Project, and one with fat feminist activists Tasha Fierce and Hanne Blank.
Mothra. Why We Live. Boston: n.p., 1999. Print.
This two zine series addresses women's issues and racism. "Activism and Body Image" has essays on feminism from many different authors, an interview with a rape crisis counselor, worksheets from racism workshops, how to start a Gay Straight Alliance, a reprint of Peggy McIntosh's essay about the white privilege, resources and information on eating disorders, a piece on self inflicted violence, thoughts on being adopted, and how to make positive body image art. "Self-Defense and Women's Health" provides statistics on rape and survival, an in depth look at what qualifies as sexual harassment, self defense techniques, a "Menstruation Manifesto," and alternatives to pharmaceutical feminine hygiene products. Zine contributors include white, middle class, queer, biracial, Asian-American, and lesbian college and art school students. Among them are Hannah Hafter, Eleanor Whitney and others.
Perri, Brandi. Fat Zines: Widening Spaces for Multiple Voices and Experiences. Amherst: n.p.,
Brandi, a PhD student, made this zine as an accompaniment to her research presentation at the Southwest Popular/American Culture Association Conference in Albuquerque, NM. It contains excerpts from "Glutton for Fatshion" zine and articles about NAAFA, a fat liberation group. She provides recommendations of print and online fat-positive resources, a glossary, and a works cited list. Other elements include paper dolls, zine excerpts, illustrations and art.