Friday Finds: Rawand Issa’s ‘Not from Mars’

The Bigmouth is a project that focuses on “womxn, femmes, and non-binary AMEMSA (African, Middle Eastern, Muslim, South Asian) people in comix and illustration,” and Issa’s Not from Mars is the first zine from Lebanon to be featured:

In an interview with Bigmouth, Issa said of her work:

RI: The most books that influenced me are autobiographies. For example, Nawal ElSaadawi’s “مذكراتي في سجن النساء”* actually encouraged me to take actions in my life. It’s powerful to tell people that this happened to me! Rather than, this happened.

The concept of Zines is new to me, and I was amazed by the fact the one can produce a publication by their own, without having to go through the process of publishing houses and the market. It’s a revolutionary act! “Not from Mars” talks about situations that a girl (which is myself) living in a conservative, capitalist society. The situations are common to many of us ‎insofar as the personal is always in one way or another also political and thus public.

Issa also said, about exciting projects that are forthcoming:

Yes! We’re starting a comic zine collective called ZEEZ!
5 young comic artists and myself – based in Beirut, are starting a collective to produce zines seasonally. We’re hoping to launch our first work in June!

You can follow Issa on Instagram or find more of her featured work on Bigmouth.

*Available in English as Memoirs from the Women’s Prison, trans. Marilyn Booth.

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