Over the past few years (when I tried to stop being self absorbed and mostly interested in frivolous hobbies), I’ve tried to make this blog a sometimes educational space where I can research and write about the issues about which I’m most passionate and share them with any readers. Two of the most prominent topics I blog about are obviously prison industrial complex abolition and communism because I hope my passion for these beliefs manifest in the people who read my writings. It’s easy for me to provide articles (like this one about Ruthie Wilson Gilmore!), longform essays, and books about abolition and communism with all of you, but one often overlooked resource is handmade zines. Zines are usually small self-printed and published booklets individuals and/or groups create to share information about specific topics. Abolitionists and “radical” groups have specifically been creating zines for who knows how long to share easy to understand arguments in favor of the dismantling of the carceral state. Socialists and communists have also rapidly developed and distributed zines to advocate for their sometimes confusing histories and points of view. The booklets often contain pictures and writings to introduce topics that tend to be difficult to grasp. I’ve recently shared some of these zines with friends and coworkers who are interested (aka I forced the info on them) in my two favorite beliefs and they’re great short summaries of crucial materials. Here, I compiled a quick list of some of my favorite zines regarding abolition and communism:
- Sanctions of Empire: A Nodutdol Zine—discusses the harm that American sanctions cause to other countries. From Iran to Cuba to North Korea, the embargoes and sanctions America places on these places are devastating and violent.
- Miklat Miklat: A Transformative Justice Zine—presents individual cases that involved TJ on a global scale. Also argues for community resources during crises instead of calling the cops.
- Racial Capitalism and Prison Abolition—shares theories of Black Marxism and prison abolitionism from infamous scholars like Cedric Robinson, Robin D.G. Kelley, Ruth Wilson Gilmore, Mariame Kaba, and Angela Davis.
- We Are All We Need—a mini zine about how to show up for marginalized groups at protests and why no one should ever positively interact with cops because unintended consequences could be dangerous for everyone else.