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Wolfe, Jen



Sisters Sarah and Jen Wolfe began collecting zines in the early 1990s, during the birth and evolution of the riot grrrl movement. Their interest in zines was born out of their involvement with the underground and independent music scenes. The Wolfes operated a small mail-order distribution service (Agoraphobic Records, later renamed Septophilia) for zines and records, which helped keep them in contact with the world of independent music. Jen published her own zine Panophobia, and from 1995-1998 played bass for the band Bunnygrunt.

Zines (originally called fanzines) are amateur, DIY (Do-It-Yourself) publications produced non-commercially, designed to circulate among a small number of people sharing similar cultural or social interests. Generally speaking, zines are produced by a single individual - in a cut-and-paste fashion and photocopied - and distributed informally by hand or at concerts, zine fests, bookstores, music stores and other locations, or sent through the mail at low cost.

Zines are important methods of communication among members of distinct subcultures or social communities traditionally underrepresented by the societal mainstream. In the modern era, zines became popular during the emergence of science fiction fandom starting in the 1930s. SF fans created zines, which evolved out of the letter columns from SF literary magazines such as Astounding Stories, in order to communicate with each other and provide forums in which fans could express their own personal opinions about the genre and its media products. Zines fairly quickly became a distinct feature of SF fandom and remain so to this day.

Zines were taken up by other distinct cultural movements, including beat literature in the 1950s, underground comics in the 1960, punk music in the 1970s, and the feminist riot grrl movement in the 1990s. As methods of cheap photocopying and, later, the personal computer, became more widely available in the 1980s and 1990s the number and variations of zines exploded. With the advent of the Internet and the introduction of blogging as a tool of personal and creative expression, the number of print zines began declining, although the zine remains popular among particular subcultures as a tool of personal and creative expression and as a way of exchanging thoughts, ideas and opinions.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

Jen Wolfe Comic Book Collection

Identifier: msc0879

Collection of comic books that mostly feature major female characters, are written and drawn by female artists, and/or chronicle stories of traditionally female interest, such as romance comics.

Dates: 1948-2006