(For all those who feel like they're stagnating)
LINGERING WITHIN THE ANGULAR CHEILITIS
OF ALABASTER STATUES
PICKING OVER THE BUFFET OF LIFE
MIRED IN SNEEZE GUARD REFLECTIONS OF THE WORLD
PASSING UP SODDEN SHRIMP
AND THE LUKEWARM FRUITS OF LOVE
IN THE NAME OF VAIN HOPE
BAND TOGETHER AND LIBERATE YOURSELF
THROUGH MEANS OF THE SOCIAL REVOLUTION
Sad joke attempts aside, here's the self-indulgent bit where you are made to read through the ideological premise of this limping, pained project's existence. :) We are a youth-organized and authored independent fanzine, with both an online and in-print presence. Death of print strives to bring you the best of new music and teenage spirit alongside our archaeological attempts to uncover subculture's early dilettantes and lift time's unfortunate veil of obscurity from around their work. We aim to do so while remaining present and topical; with a progressive attitude towards postmodern subculture and world happenings. We're committed to energizing other young people via the subversive art that has so enriched our lives, and providing them the same purpose which brings us such joy. We set out with the idea that our zine could be a platform to amplify the voices of young people, marginalized perspectives and unconventional or underrepresented artists of all denominations. Within that goal exists the other of our twin ideological pursuits- the establishment of a subcultural community based upon anti hierarchical, anti state/party, anti capitalist and anti work ideals. Under a common goal of radical individual liberation, we aspire to play a small part in the destruction of the notion of art as a supposedly legitimate thing in of itself. This is a distinction which capitalism creates. “Art” is but freeing and natural creation which capitalism has ensured may not be revolutionary play against the regime of work by constraining it to the commodity form, and thus art must not be destroyed but rather understood as unreal. Granted, terms such as “art” have become so culturally ingrained as descriptive terms that we will make use of them for lack of a better word, but we do attempt to negate the idea of art as a legitimate institution. Ideas like “anti capitalism” and “subculture” have become so hopelessly distorted and recuperated as the prime indicators of virtue signaling that they’ve all but lost their attached meanings- but there is no winning in that regard, only adjustment to match distortion.
We hold no pretensions of being able to exist outside of those linguistic or societal parameters which we oppose, or of fundamentally changing them on our own- only of better adjusting to life within them with the help of such opiates as irony and the self referential commodity, whilst forever inching closer to the personally unattainable goal of shedding those systems of subjugation- Aspiring to make any sort of small contribution, however infinitesimal, to the social revolution which must ultimately be a widespread, but individually focused and instigated effort. However idealistic we may be- we can only speak to readers and partake in the misplaced emulation of fallen idols- but that hope in the form of naiveté is the power of youth, and we must wield it. Our desire is to propagate our revolutionary message within this small circle and promote those artists who lessen the pain through tolerable short term escapism in the name of spiritual survival, or those who make us more cognizant of it in a way more poignant than our teenage typing. But that concession should not be misconstrued as catering to the insidious nature of capitalist realism- but rather understood as the concession that gestural anticapitalism expressed within media further exacerbates it by fulfilling the anticapitalist ideological function within society whilst negating the fact that it too has been recuperated, thus shrouding inescapable truths in more layers of irony. The best we can offer as individuals and artists short of collective uprising that we alone cannot orchestrate in our current state within the ideological prison of capitalism is the next level of irony and criticism, the commodity opposed to the self referential commodity, and anticapitalism critical of anticapitalism’s ability to exacerbate complacency. Within our realm of possibility we may hope to generate our own little push towards the destruction of late capitalist society as we know it, and provide comfort to one another. The global right wing regression and resurgence of pseudo-populism the world is experiencing should be a call to action for all of us- and the fundamental misappropriation of original subcultural ideals that has been ushered in alongside it is the cyclical commodification of culture we must try to renew via our own reclamation and destruction to attain that brief moment in the sun of radical breakthrough. We operate under the hope that each cycle of commodification of the anticapitalist serves to accelerate the capitalist crisis (within the realm of arts and culture) so as to avoid direct exacerbation of the ills of capitalism which would harm individuals as opposed to ideas, while still creating that ideological crisis within capitalist society to disassemble it in tandem with real active political change which can only be brought about by relatively novel, insurrectionary, and overt anticapitalist action in a world faced with constant recuperation. In reclaiming what brings us joy through a sort of bricolage, we must do our best to cut out the worst impositions upon anti capitalist culture, we must help to dispel the most reprehensible and noxious aspects of the increasingly amorphous label of “subculture” as we know it. It's immensely disturbing to see how often the idea that "punk is about free speech" gets thrown around in a context where folks simply want to say something bigoted free from justified public retribution. We exist as a small force to oppose such disgusting trends. We wish to hold others and ourselves accountable and use our speech to counteract the damage done by the malignant forces that seek to use punk's powerful ethos of personal freedom to carry out the propagation of dangerous, repressive ideologies free from consequence. Although the world is in a dire state at the moment, we are of the strong persuasion that no self respecting and decent person with the political privilege to speak should fail to distribute their wealth, and work towards dismantling their own privilege to the extent possible/ as opposed to weaponizing it to be the means through which peoples achieve equity as a saviour complex and maintaining the current hierarchies which bestow racial class and gender privileges upon individuals. There is no such thing as a conscious and productive use of privilege, as privilege by its very nature exists within the confines of capitalist hierarchy, and thus politics of mere representation within the ruling class and uber commodified realms of society, though optically beneficial, must be critically analysed as pro profit motivated actions without authentic intent, which can undermine real, threatening dissent. Such behaviours, and the focus on awareness and representation as if they were equivalent to action- or the promotion of marginalised identity within the ruling class falsely believed to be moves towards structural change- these are mere pressure release valves to incentivise complacency with short term improvements ultimately opposed to long term goals.They are but misguided attempts to effectuate change within the confines of hierarchy as opposed to dismantling it. This is not to say there must not be collaboration and a transfer of resources between the group distinctions society imposes upon us such as class, but rather that the collaboration necessary is mutual understanding, opposition to harmful liberalism, and that the revolution must come from below- it will not be white, it will not be straight, it will not be wealthy, and it will not be charitable. Bourgeois material backgrounds do not indicate the views of a person, however they will forever skew your understanding of the world, and as such one of the best things you can do aside from participating in the efforts of others and standing in solidarity, is the voluntary eradication of massive wealth inequality within your personal life. You will never achieve class consciousness as someone born into a wealthy family, and change must be brought about by the working class for its own ends. But, you can distribute what wealth you have and antagonise those around you for failing to do so. Simply put, you are not a good person if you are wealth hoardingly rich. (Yes! So entrenched is late stage capitalism that this is now terrifyingly a bone of contention for some who self-identify as “punks”- a trend which logically has occurred with the shifting demographics of arts school brought about by the stagnation of wages, which are causing arts scenes to be progressively richer and whiter affairs which reanimate the dead corpse of past cultures- shout out to Mark Fisher. Yada yada many rich people donate money to charity and do productive things etc. -insert other pathetic boot licking argument here- but surely not enough of it if they remain absurdly rich, and thus bad people- Even if they are mummy and daddy.) Lifestyle politics should be opposed, but living a life which is entirely opposed to your own values and actively undermines them is different from such politics of morality. Class interests are diametrically opposed, and racism, sexism, homophobia and capitalism are systems which work hand and hand, and consequently they must be simultaneously opposed for any to be truly eradicated. Instead, for privileged readers, you must seek to dismantle your own, seek out the facist within all of us which has been conned into loving authority, work, and subjugation, and support the establishment of authentic community. True diversity, allyship and informed support as opposed to the disturbing trend of “privilege use.” Systems which favour the wealthy logically have a tendency to create distracted citizens wrapped up in their own lives due to the necessity of keeping themselves above water, a conscious contributor to the disenfranchisement of working people. Within the confines of this project we do our best to utilize what voice we have to shut up when necessary (for white, male, cis, hetero or class unconcious contributors on staff) and to be a platform for authentic voice artists, expressing the authentic voices we have on staff and recounting experiences of marginalization, all the while committing not to dominate the narratives of given groups within this publication's work or advancing notions of saviourism towards marginalised and minority population communities which have always been the backbone of subculture and yet have never received adequate acknowledgment for their contributions- rock n’ roll and the revolutionary potential of its sounds are a back creation. Communities alive with culture and energy are far more than their mere marginalization. As a zine dedicated to anti hierarchical schools of thought, we wish to play our small part to the best of our abilities to help rid the world of the issues caused by discrimination and capitalism through the promotion of intersectional group awareness in the name of disseembling group identity in the future, neccessary destruction of property/norms, insurrectionary atcion, radical but caring individualism, and community building empathy in opposition to all unjust hierarchies. We believe in aiding in the self actualization and right to liberty of every individual for the benefit of all, and in deradicalizing those who have fallen into the trap of bigotry. We can make no ideological compromises with capitalism and fascism and must oppose the appealing ease of neoliberalism that calls to so many in wealthy nations. Fascists deserve no voice, platform, or respect beyond their basic humanity. But when someone reaches out or attempts to negate the humanity of an entire already societally imposed grouping of people- you can take advantage of that contact to state your claim and appeal to emotion. If we were to allow such behaviours to run unchecked, said hate will fester and grow stronger within right-wing echo chambers. Discriminatory mindsets are dauntingly difficult to deprogram, but it is simply self destructive to believe that there is nothing to be done and that we should just let those vile belief systems be passed down from one generation to the next, or alternatively to believe that facism is such an individually focused thing that it can be dismantled by rejecting the often white and liberal tyranny of nonviolence in favour of enjoying it, as opposed to understanding it as the sometimes necessary and useful tool it is- as if you could threaten the deeply entrenched ideology out of true believers or kill them all. Not withstanding harassment is entirely justified, and no one should have to do so- if you are shoved aside it is reasonable to cut your losses. Above all, we must never prioritize the slow and immensely difficult deradicalisation of the alt right believers who've appropriated subculture above the acceptance of those they seek to dehumanize, and ensuring that we fight for change first before attempting to emotionally appeal to bigots is enormously important. But, for those who can engage emotionally with those disgusting narratives or create outreach within the local community as opposed to by out of touch outsiders when such folks harass them by interacting with those people who've conned themselves into believing their only allies are individuals who have the aforementioned qualities. Even if there is little hope- if one in a thousand did it'd be a successful endeavour- and the notion that perpetuating those societal failures means you cannot ever redeem yourself is a contributing factor to the entrenchment of both racism and neoliberalism by allowing those individuals often on the fringes of society, primed for radicalization- to be radicalized by hate groups as opposed to being steeped in ideologies which seek to combat the systems which allowed them to be on the outs initially- and subsequently allowing neoliberal politicians to generalize and disavow that bigotry without taking accountability for the institutions they enforce which enable it to breed, shifting the blame and perpetuating the illusory dichotomy of partisan politics. Combating hateful narratives with facts and logic is not effective towards those trained to rebuke any anti hierarchical belief system. They have found purpose within the conditional acceptance of hateful community, and they must know that that the systemic injustices they feel so disenfranchised by do exist- but rather that they are deeply rooted systems of discrimination on the basis of class, race, gender, ability and sexuality intentionally designed to subjugate working people, not systems monopolized by minorities, a view which they have been trained to use as their scapegoats by way of ludicrous conspiracy theory and blinding ignorance. There is a distinction which must be made between the acceptance of disgusting viewpoints and a willingness to inform bigots on the condition of respect in order to marginally improve the current global state of affairs- we will never accept those views, and tolerating intolerance and racism allows it to thrive. It is by no means a logical fallacy to be intolerant in that regard, and every person should be. Before we may erase the concept of group identities as a means to categorize one another we must first erase the societally constructed but practically real boundaries between such groups, boundaries which serve as the determining factor of the notion of groups themselves. Grouped political identities did not evolve for evolution’s sake, they evolved as a response to the societally imposed discrimination levied against them. To fall into line with some “postmodern” schools of thought which seek to negate practical application of oppression’s identity politics; and not the horrid liberal interpretation of them in the form of its own identity politics which seek to portray group identity as natural, generalize all members of a given group and present them as in need of saving and only their struggles; but rather the general view of differing inequities which fall along the boundaries of societally imposed groups- To deny that practical existence of these greater social categories as a way to achieve equity is to be ahistorical, and such a view skirts around the truth that categorization can only occur in reference to another. The false perception of inherent otherness must, in this case, be destroyed so the necessary societally imposed group identities may fall away. Short of the abolition of capitalism and private property through which hierarchies are enforced- and without the acknowledgement of inequity on the basis of grouped identities- they will become more difficult to do away with as they are understandably clung to in the face of oppression, and will reform once more in the name of solidarity, even if against bigotry as opposed to structural oppression in a post-revolutionary society, ensuring the perpetuation of demographic identity and false homogeneity amongst racial, gender and sexual minorities which capitalism creates for those it marginalises. Black liberation, women’s lib, not being a raging homophobe- none of the aforementioned or related issues are liberal versions of idpol, and class-reductionist currents that seek to label those things as such must be opposed.
We must all see to it that we are not helpless bystanders as global seats of power are destabilized and disturbing political trends continue to play out on the world stage. As an organization we'd like to harness the power of gen z to counteract them. We, as a generation appear to be quite politically literate and socially conscious in the general sense, with some of the most discernibly Anarchist, post-leftist, Libretarian Marxist or what have you (whatever useless ideological groupings various anti capitalist / against antiquated modes of leftist organisation beliefs) to be held as a generation since the sixties. Having been raised in an era of political unrest and capitalist crisis, we are of the belief that there are more young people brimming with a desire to subvert than ever before. More young anger directed towards the establishment, straight from the mouths of youth disenfranchised by the state and system with an endless supply of bright ideas. And yet, in a world functioning under late capitalism the cultural pedestal upon which the promising and insurrectionary nature of youth culture used to be placed has all but vanished- save for the recuperatory attempts to reclaim radical imagery so it may be sanded down to little more than a floating signifier which can be associated with some amorphous definition of "cool," and reused to be sold. We consequently find ourselves struggling to organize widespread, active, subcultural movements, as culture is appropriately decentralized due to the deterritorialization of ideas to prepare them for commodification. In a world where we are so fixated on the most recently recycled stylistic trends, formulation of new aesthetics always feels derivative. The truth is that all things are living in the supposed age “after history”, and the only way to produce ingenuity is to be derivative in the right sort of way, with your own unique collage of the "done before." Now that punk and radical, anti establishment youth culture has been "done before" within the past hundred or so years that the cultural conception of the teenager has existed, capitalism has recuperated it with the goal of serving its own agenda. The genuine ideological passion which has fuelled such movements, that still persists in incredibly large quantities to this day, has been relegated to the sidelines more so than when there were widely acknowledged spaces set aside, however small, to prompt the development of new subcultures and aesthetic manifestations of their revolutionary ideologies every few years within the ever churning cycle of culture. In fact, we believe that part of why today's subcultural communities exist largely online and in basement show crevices which seem to dwindle year by year is because of its vast and amorphous nature, and the fact that those ideological passions of generation z are perhaps more nuanced and unwilling to conform to a certain set of desirable aesthetics and boundaries. This is a positive and extremely important drive, and may lead us to a newer state of subculture which is much harder to pervert and confine, which would ultimately be for the best- but the need for outreach and cultural prominence still persists. The internet age has gifted subculture with a variety of changes, such as the fact that culture is now better equipped to transcend class boundaries, our increased cultural education and awareness, and the development of online scenes and research resources- but the conventional landscape of independent publishing has changed, and subculture has been slow to catch up. We can ensure that this new wave of interest in youth cultures improves its modern incarnations by examining past discriminatory wrongs and formatting our zine to fit the world within its current state. We hope the ever present trend which has taken subculture from a place of reverence (At least amongst those with an open mind) to a place in which the wonderful and talented artists producing today who cite subculture as a direct influence are garnering less attention than in decades has reached its endpoint. We hope the current wave of genuine subcultural resurgence the world seems to be riding persists, and that we may take advantage of it to further spread our ideals via this publication. It would seem to us that youth culture has reached a tipping point. We are so completely oversaturated with vapid culture and boredom that the measures put in place to prevent the fomentation of cultural revolution are being ground down. What Death of Print strives to do is broaden the scope of subculture's influence in the present day world by way of the channels we now have at our disposal, and to spread our message so we may achieve the goal of incentivizing a higher rate of teenage participation in anti hierarchical communities. We'd like to establish our own ideologically threatening youth movements by looking towards the subversive artists of the past whilst simultaneously keeping ourselves forward thinking as we work for subculture to be accessible to all, and for it to be an environment which is welcoming to a more diverse and globally inclusive array of people. Additionally, we strongly believe in providing a space for older devotees to engross themselves in the subcultures which informed their youth once again, and in learning from the mistakes and successes of the past by valuing their insights and the continued participation of those who lived to witness the culmination of impressive historical scenes. Subculture should be accessible to everyone who has internalized its ideals- and that is a view we will always continue to espouse. New initiates should be provided an environment in which they can learn about and consume subcultural media for the joy of it, stress-free and without any pretensions of fulfilling an ideal of what "punk" "goth" or any other sort of label is supposedly intended to be- and nor should their level of knowledge regarding such dormant cultures be perceived as indicative of their commitment to them or worthiness to participate within their current mutations and emulations. Such behaviour presents an abrasive front to those whom we should be welcoming with open arms if we want to increase the prevalence of revolutionary potential. Death of Print operates on a small, collectivist but role specification and collective mentality free volunteer basis. All profits (if any) that the zine and platform generate are equally distributed amongst individually valued contributors or donated to charitable causes, which will be specified in our upcoming projects where that applies. At heart, we believe anti-establishment ideals to be a remarkably powerful force. When young people are endowed with the freedom to be completely and truly themselves -such as that is possible within the current societal context short of the abolition of capitalism- the greater world benefits from a rich and honest culture of individuals who've found the inner-strength to break out of the uniform boxes people are streamlined and educated to best fit within. However; that desire for individual liberation must always exist as a building block of the ever-important collective good; so that it may be improved upon from the macro level, as the liberation of the individual is ultimately in the interest of the collective. Self actualisation is but selfishness without the necessary companion of overtly political, insurrectionary direct action which benefits all in its attempts to destroy workerist society, oppressive forms of doctrinaire leftism, capitalism and the industrialised regime of commodity production. Ultimately, self-assurance is the only viable strategy to achieve proximity to authenticity to self, and reconcile some of the fractured identities capitalism promotes the development of only to discard with the next trend. We are always infinitely inching closer to that personally unattainable goal in the hopes of one day attaining it hand in hand with the world- always improving upon our painful proxy; but simultaneously warring against ideological complacency which suggests that that fight is anything but an immensely painful waging of class warfare; a screeching attempt to claw back the individual identity. In line with that assertion,we must also try to dispel the notion that one can be both fully cognizant of, and truly satisfied in their sense of self under late capitalism. Regrettably, self actualization within our realm of possibility does not come easily by any means, and nor can it be attained without the support of an unconventional community which coaxes our vulnerable, fleshy selves into the daylight. In short, we aim to be such a community, and to exist as an environment which preaches responsible individual liberty grounded in mutual aid, respect, and a nuanced worldview.