Friday Feminist Fuck Yeah: Brown anti-violence zine

Bluestockings Zine

Feminists at Brown University have gone old school.

Yesterday student Lena Sclove filed federal Title IX and Clery Act complaints against the Rhode Island university, which has been in the news recently for tolerating sexual violence on campus. On campus, organizers are coupling these high-profile efforts with that traditional feminist punk protest: the zine. Bluestockings Magazine, a student multimedia collective, has put out a gorgeous issue exposing and resisting violence on campus. The survivor narratives are powerful and the design striking, but perhaps most noteworthy is the fierce utopianism, a refusal to accept rape culture as an inevitability to be managed rather than abolished. “Re:imagine (a world without sexual violence),” the zine demands, right above a clipped photo of armed nuns.

It’s also refreshing to be reminded of the legacy of organizing on which current student efforts are built. Coverage of campus anti-violence organizing is too often decidedly ahistorical; you’d think from articles on those crazy kids strategizing over social media and learning about laws that no student had thought to organize against sexual assault before Twitter. Student organizers today are certainly using some new strategies and riding a wave of unprecedented national energy but the movement to end campus violence has a long story: case in point, Bluestockings just published a quarter-century history of “sexual assault activism at Brown.”

For this reason, Bluestocking’s use of a decidedly retro medium — now uploaded online for a vast distribution not possible when zines first emerged — seems particularly fitting. As a movement of student organizers we create fresh resistance using the materials passed on to us by previous generations who started the fight we’re trying to finish.

Alexandra

Alexandra Brodsky is a Feministing editor, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX.

New Haven, CT

Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX, a national legal education campaign against campus gender-based violence. Alexandra has written for publications including the New York Times, the Atlantic, the Guardian, and the Nation, and she has spoken about violence against women and reproductive justice on MSNBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, FOX, and NPR. Through Know Your IX, she has organized with students across the country to build campuses free from discrimination and violence, developed federal policy on Title IX enforcement, and has testified at the Senate. At Yale Law, Alexandra focuses on antidiscrimination law and is a member of the Veterans Legal Services Clinic. Alexandra is committed to developing and strengthening responses to gender-based violence outside the criminal justice system through writing, organizing, and the law. Keep an eye out for The Feminist Utopia Project, co-edited by Alexandra and forthcoming from the Feminist Press (2015).

Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX.

Read more about Alexandra

Join the Conversation

Comments are closed.