Asian American Feminist Antibodies, {care in the time of coronavirus}, Asian American Feminist Collective and Bluestockings Bookstore

Asian American Feminist Antibodies {care in the time of coronavirus} by the Asian American Feminist Collective and Bluestockings Bookstore; A/P/A Voices: A COVID-19 Public Memory Project; NYU Tamiment Library & Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives.

by Joy Freund

The digital and print version of the zine, Asian American Feminist Antibodies: {care in the time of coronavirus} is a collection of stories, essays, and artwork that offers tools and testimonies on navigating the COVID-19 pandemic as an outbreak that has been racialized as Asian. The zine was released in March of 2020 as a collaboration between the Asian American Feminist Collective and Bluestockings Bookstore. Editing, curation, and design of the zine were led by Rachel Kuo, co-founder of AAFC, in collaboration with Salonee Bhaman, Matilda Sabal, Vivian Shaw, and Tiffany Diane Tso. Birthed through an experimental process of building coalition in digital space, the zine features pieces contributed by a range of community members and perspectives including healthcare workers and caregivers, students, people living with chronic illness, journalists, and community organizers. Its content is divided into three primary sections in the following order: frameworks, stories, and resources, and includes content spanning a range of forms including poetry, essays, stories, visual art, as well as resource lists. In the midst of a global pandemic that has reinvigorated anti-Asian racism, the zine seeks to uplift protocols of care connected to Asian American histories and politics. The zine includes personal accounts, creative works, and analyses rooted in resistance to imperialism, capitalism, and patriarchy, and encourages networks of care that do not rely on the state.

The Asian American Feminist Collective is a New York City based organization of Asian American activist organizers, scholars, artists, and writers dedicated to community building and public and political education. AAFC emerged out of the surge of feminist resistance that initiated the Women’s March and Strike in January 2017 with the objective of reviving an Asian American feminist lens to create spaces for Asian Americans to speak to their intersectional experiences that may not be reflected within mainstream feminism. Bluestockings Bookstore is a volunteer-run, community-owned bookstore, fair-trade cafe, and community organizing center located on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.

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