Fanzine production and development of community campaigns
My aim is to create new educational instruments for Polyvalence, my patients and any association or person interested, and thus to provide them with universally available practical resources with which they can themselves create and broadcast information, and become the agents of their own emancipation, no matter their particular situation.
How do I participate ?
- Producing new fanzines means :
– answering calls for testimony – as well as for illustrations, naturally (and broadcasting them);
– working on the creation and dissemination of printed and/or digital material in line with the current topics for testimony (such as excision, migration, sex work, mourning, BDSM, contraception, abortion, chronic illness, maternity and sexuality, polyamory) and new illustrations;
– developing practical tools (such as legal documents, medical advice, directories, lexica);
– doing research (including interviews with various professionals: physicians, lawyers, social partners).
And then of course there’s editorial work: correcting and assembling the texts, writing the intros, creating appendices, doing the layout and preparing the bibliographical data.
- Developing community campaigns
– developing regular campaigns (welcoming, listening, providing support, information and orientation, as well as raising awareness and training professionals) at Polyvalence headquarters and “on the street”.
For my part, I train participants in welcoming and caring for certain population segments, and in the creation and dissemination of educational tools:
—- active collection of written testimony, audio, video in the field (camps, prisons, shelters and reception facilities);
—- interviews with physicians, lawyers, social partners and others;
—- presentation of research (training of paramedical, social and academic personnel, organisation of training days);
– developing monthly and weekly drop-ins (emergency sexual health, legal aid and psychological clinics);
– developing community workshops at headquarters (art therapy, childcare) and “on the street” (reception facilities, detention houses, hosting centres, camps in Paris);
– developing dependable support (ensuring support at the police precinct and at the doctor’s, outreach in equal measure to drop-ins);
– pursuing and consolidating partnerships with the associations, collectives and structures that are subject to our interventions, as well as establishing new contacts with the paramedical, social and academic community with an eye to offering sensitivity and training workshops on the issues we address.
This is a non-exhaustive list both of types of aid offered and of potential calls for testimony. The principle remains the same: let us join forces to establish a database providing varied and dependable resources that will allow us to manage collective campaigns at our headquarters (workshops, discussion groups, consultation sessions) and “on the street” (run by Polyvalence or other persons and/or associations wishing to use our fanzines and/or expertise for their own campaigns).
EXAMPLE – FANZINE FAIR 8 MARCH – INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S DAY – COMBATING SEXIST VIOLENCE – CALL TO PARTICIPATE.
Since its inception, Polyvalence has combated sexist violence by giving its victims a voice: a voice for women who are the victims of domestic violence, of rape, of sexual aggression, of violence at the hands of the medical and healthcare sectors and of institutional violence… as well as a voice for all those who suffer the collateral damage of the norms imposed by a hetero-patriarchal society.
Polyvalence advocates free speech and aims to make all of these voices heard, to render them credible and to offer them support, whether by means of its internet site, by publishing printed material, by organising and holding training sessions, workshops and discussion groups or by offering shelter, guidance and sex therapy.
With my fanzine fairs and consulting work, I want to offer tools to women who are victims of violence and/or those wishing to pursue a course of sex therapy and thus allow them to take an active role in their own escape from such violence, to help others in their turn and to find answers, both pertinent and comprehensive, to their questions.
I regularly receive testimony from women who have been victims of sexist violence, by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, in written form and as audio or video content. I then publish this testimony on our website and collect it into themed anthologies, illustrated by professional and amateur artists. Once printed alongside the digital version, these anthologies offer supplementary access to testimony.
These anthologies or “fanzines” afford a new way of approaching testimony: not virtually but as an object capable of physical circulation from hand to hand, an object that can be consulted, leant out, given as a gift. The fanzines can be purchased, a commercial transaction that is also a form of activism because the proceeds go to support a militant project: and thus the fanzines are militant, activist objects. Anthologies already in print have served as templates for theatrical productions, activist readings, radio broadcasts and exhibitions, among other things. They are available in select bookstores and from associations engaged in combating sexist violence, and may be recommended within the framework of a consultation depending on its particular concern.
Do not hesitate to share your ideas. All feasible projects are welcome. I am of course happy to help you develop your ideas but I unfortunately no longer have the time to help you help me help you 🙂