Anchor Archive Zine Library

Contact Info
Location: RadStorm, 2177 Gottingen Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3K 3B5

Read Queer Zines!

By SoniaEdworthy?

Zines are self-published magazines, usually photocopied and stapled and sold for one or two dollars, just to cover the cost of producing them. People create zines for many reasons: as an outlet, to share information, to express passion about a topic, to connect with other like-minded folks, but never to get rich. Zines are alternative, independent media and are mostly used by communities and individuals who are excluded from the mainstream media. Zines are a venue for marginalized voices.

Anchor Archive Zine Library has over 2,000 zines that cover a wide range of topics including radical politics, personal stories, instructions on how to do-it-yourself, alternative health, education, parenting, travel and much more. Because zines may represent a venue for marginalized voices, many people who write for zines are queer. Zines, newsletters and pamphlets were published by feminists and gay-rights activists in the 1970’s and 80’s. Many young women in the Riot Grrrl movement published zines that challenged male/heterosexual-dominated punk culture with manifestas and personal stories about things like sexual abuse, abortions, coming out as lesbian or queer. Many queer zine-makers write about queer identity and queer politics, but many also write about their lives, their interests and topics that aren’t necessarily queer. Since the late 1990’s there has been an explosion of amazing zines, comics and independent media by queer activists, artists and writers.

A good resource for queer/gay/lesbian/trans zines is the Queer Zine Archive in Milwaukie. The primary function of QZAP is to provide a free on-line searchable database of the collection with links allowing users to download electronic copies of zines. By providing access to the historical canon of queer zines we hope to make them more accessible to diverse communities and reach wider audiences. You can find them on-line at and mail order zines. Here in Halifax at the Anchor Archive we have two boxes dedicated to explicitly Queer zines and lots with queer content in other categories such as sex, feminism, politics, stories and personal.

pic2008-03-16 During Roberts Street Social Centre period

Some titles in the queer boxes include:

The Anchor Archive was open Sundays from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m. and Tuesdays from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. Anyone could come and browse the collection during open hours but if you want to borrow a zine and keep it for two weeks, you needed to sign up to become a member. Membership cost $2 per year and with zine-borrowing privileges you can get our bi-weekly email updates about exciting events and programs we offer.