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Spreading the message! Fanzines and the punk scene in Portugal1

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Even though the production of fanzines precedes the emergence of punk, the truth is that it was with punk that the fanzines become relevant as a space for freedom of thought and creation, as well as an alternative to the conventional media. Since the 1970s, the fanzines’ universe has expanded thematically and stylistically, and also in its territorial coverage and in the communicational supports used. In this article we adopt an approach that goes beyond the Anglo-Saxon reality and intend to look at fanzines as ‘communities’ founded around a cultural object, which have produced texts, photos and other materials regarding the Portuguese punk scene from the late 1970s until now. From a large set of fanzines we will analyse the ways of production, design and typography, the main themes, distribution channels, bands, the scenes and lifestyles covered in them. In this study, we consider fanzines to be an alternative media that, from late modernity, is able to reveal the punk movement and the DIY ethos associated with it. We seek to understand fanzines’ relevance to the Portuguese punk scene context, both past and present, and we also identify some patterns of evolution and change.
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Keywords: DIY practices; Portugal; alternative media; fanzines; punk culture; punk scenes

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: University of Porto 2: University of Coimbra

Publication date: December 1, 2014

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  • Punk & Post-Punk is a journal for academics, artists, journalists and the wider cultural industries. Placing punk and its progeny at the heart of inter-disciplinary investigation, it is the first forum of its kind to explore this rich and influential topic in both historical and critical theoretical terms.
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