"Your Zine Changed My Life": The Impact and Legacy of Zines in Sassy Magazine

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Ohio State University Press

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The teen magazine Sassy (1988–1996) positioned itself as an edgier alternative to its competitors; underground culture, and particularly zines, were important parts of its identity. By featuring zines by young women and girls, Sassy made reading and writing zines accessible to its readers. This message was especially powerful within the context of Sassy’s larger project of encouraging readers to produce their own media. Yet as small-circulation, self-published works, zines are not intended for mainstream audiences, and some zine writers saw the magazine’s interest as exploitative. This essay explores the consequences of covering them in a mainstream magazine for teen girls.


Accepted Manuscript: version updated to include the author's revisions after peer review, prior to any typesetting for the journal.


zines, teen magazines, self-publishing, underground culture, girl culture, punk


Published version: Braun, Jolie. 'Your Zine Changed My Life': The Impact and Legacy of Zines in Sassy Magazine. American Periodicals 31(2020):149-163. https://muse.jhu.edu/article/773269