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(en) Czech, afed: Stories of Czech fanzine - Book review I scream: "It's me." [machine translation]

Date Mon, 4 Jun 2018 16:15:02 +0300


It is gratifying to see that there are more works to do with the history of the present, that is, the last decades, when mapping outspoken speeches far away from power centers. History is traditionally conceived as the history of the elites, or of those social groups that have had an influence on its formation. However, many human activities remain in the background, they do not have a major impact on the functioning of society as a whole, and often they do not even stand. Here we could include various subcultures in the broadest sense, and interest communities and marginal social movements. All these communities have their ways of bringing together and communicating with each other. ---- The story of the subculture in the Czech Republic was devoted to the book series Tribes , which was followed by a relatively unsuccessful series of television documentaries. Punk subculture was extensively described by Filip Fuchs in Guitar and Roy . A commented review of anarchist journalistic activities in the years 1990-2013 was prepared by the Anarchist Federation Publishing House . And there would be more to it. The last act that could be included in this line is Milos Hroch's book I'm Screaming: "It's Me" with the subtitle Stories of Czech Fanzine from the 80s to the present .

Similar to the Tribes , the book is divided into chapters, each of which is devoted to the prints of individual subcultures or interest communities, and each is handled by anyone in these groups. Do not expect any survey study of hundreds of titles that have seen the light of the world, as was the case with Anarchist journalism , on the contrary, the human face of fanzine creation through the stories and insights of several zen creators. This approach has its pros and cons. It can well illustrate an individual's relationship to the medium, its creation, and the community it is intended for. On the other hand, it can easily flatten the huge variety and breadth of the titles. This is particularly evident in the chapter on hardcore / punk subculture.

As a red thread with almost all the chapters of line enthusiasm of creation. This is illustrated by the first words from the introduction by Karel Veselý when describing the ceremony of the moment when the work is done and the author is lazy with the final product. In connection with mass internet access, there is also a clear loyalty to paper media. "Real is what we can touch."

Certain tensions, however, are reflected in the very title that sounds very individualistic. If you ask yourself why the book was named just like this, you will find the answer only in the last chapter devoted to photographic zines. These seem to be a purely individual matter, which underlines in this sense the relatively dismal tone of the chapter. Perhaps this is because photozins are not tied to a community like the rest of the book's stories. Often it does not matter that there is a tramp, a fanatic who takes it as his mission, but the fact that he does not do it for himself, cooperates with various contributors, communicates with the reader. It has to be attracted to Veselý when he writes that "the team is always better than the individual".

I personally enjoyed the chapters on feminism and hardcore / punk, as I know zinc production in this area and I'm close to it. I was curious about science fiction and comics. On the contrary, I was a little afraid that stories from the metal or computer environment would not tell me much. Footbridge error. The whole book, despite her 230 pages, gushed almost in a single day. It was not that difficult, however, to take into account the rich visual accompaniment and the fact that the publication is bilingual, and each side is composed of the Czech text and its English translation.

To make the stories unattainable in a vacuum, it puts them in the context of the introductory chapter by Milos Hroch, describing the emergence of the phenomenon of fanzines in the United States of the 1930s "in a ring of enthusiastic sci-fi fans." From Western theory and practice, he takes us to the Eastern Bloc where he sees the samizdat, and evaluates the normalization consensus "You Let Us be We and You", which makes it possible for publishers of unofficial prints to be simply referred to as "dissidents" or "cottages." However, the concept of dissent does not apply to underground publishers after 1989: "It is important to define and defend in the most general sense. It does not play the role of a regime, social stereotypes, music business, or art market mechanisms. "

It is good to know that "fanzine cottages and dissidents are still here".

I'm screaming, "It's me.": Stories of the Czech fanzine from the 80s to the present / I shout "That's me!": Stories of the Czech fanzine from the '80s till now . Published by PageFive publisher in 2017. 230 pages. Price 490 CZK. For example, kosmas.cz .

https://www.afed.cz/text/6847/pribehy-ceskeho-fanzinu
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