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New Feminist Publication on Campus

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Written by: Communicator StaffSeptember 25, 2014

Madolyn Murray

IPFW has a new publication on campus that hopes to bring feminist issues out of women’s studies classrooms and into the hands of students.

Cat Talk started over the summer with the goals of starting more discussions about feminism on campus, provide a public venue for students to express feminist viewpoints and to help support feminist organizations on campus.

The co-founders, Amanda Neumann, who edits the writing submissions, and Monica Young, who handles art submissions, printing and also helps helm Campus Feminists in Solidarity, both have made contributions to the magazine beyond editing. The next issue will include an article by Neumann and a comic by Young.

Cat Talk is a zine focusing on a specific topic with minimal restrictions on content and presentation.

Zines are associated with countercultural movements such as feminism. Cat Talk specifically being inspired by Riot Grrl zines from the 90s. They aim to collect submissions from students to show diverse understandings of what feminism actually is: many things to many people.

“One of the biggest points of the zine is just showing everyone on campus how feminism, there’s no one definition for it, there’s no ‘this is a feminist statement and this is not,’” Neumann said. “It’s all how it’s interpreted and how people take it into their daily lives and make it the movement that it is.”

This approach also includes coverage of other topics concerning human rights. For example, Young and Neumann’s contributions to the next issue cover racism and ableism.

The zine has already received a buzz on campus.

“I’ve been approached by several people about Cat Talk,” Neumann said. “One male classmate stopped me after class and asked me to talk more about what Cat Talk is — I’d mentioned it in class introductions. We talked about feminism and how he was excited to show his young daughter the issue. Just last week I heard two classmates talking about how cool they thought having a feminist zine on campus is–which was incredibly exciting… It’s great hearing people I’m not acquainted with having discussions about feminism because of Cat Talk…A large part of feminism is solidarity and support so I’m happy that different groups on campus can use Cat Talk as a way to get their messages about equality out to a broader audience.”

They expressed hope that their zine could potentially lead to fellow students making zines for whatever they’re interested in, along with a more diverse political discussions on campus. “Even if they disagree with us, I want everyone to start a zine,” Young said.