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Zine Review:

Licking Stars Off Ceilings

Licking Stars Off Ceilings is a loud-mouthed, subversive little zine that brings to the fore all-things-taboo in regards to femininity and being a woman. It argues about gender inequality and the assumed entitlement associated with being male; it talks about how women are often sexually unsatisfied; and it shows you the dirtiest, most drunken sex, pinning down every raunchy detail. So be forewarned: it’s 18+ and very sexually explicit.

Issue #5 continues on with the previous issues’ theme of feminist counterculture, particularly that of riot grrrl–the early-’90s underground feminist punk movement that emphasized universal female identity and separatism. Zine creator Clementine Cannibal re-injects this movement into public consciousness with her claim that riot grrrl is not dead. Much like the music and literary subculture of the time, the zine addresses the familiar themes of rape, abuse, sexuality and female empowerment through Cannibal’s writings, showcasing how they’re just as pervasive today as they were a decade ago. What makes this zine so striking and powerful is that it encourages discussion of all these topics–whether it’s sexual assault or creating sisterhoods, Cannibal allows room for discussion of all kinds–whether it’s in her zine or on her LiveJournal account, she provides a space for alternative conversation among like-minded people and has subsequently woven a small social network.

Riot grrrl isn’t dead, that’s for sure.

Cannibal is up to something interesting here and the zine of first-person adventures around the city and in the bedroom really preserves the empowering yet reckless nature of the riot grrrl movement. Not to mention that the zine’s collaged and photocopied appearance recalls the old handbills and fanzines used express the ideologies of the movement.

It’s an intriguing read, though it may test your comfort zone. (Amy Greenwood)

Zine, Clementine Cannibal, issue #5, $1.50,,,


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