Come one come all!
New comics out in WOC PDX Zine (Portland, Oregon), FIX MY HEAD #9: TOTAL LIBERATION, ‘As You Were: This Job Sucks (Oakland, CA), and ‘PUNK – Possibilities & Restrictions within the Subculture’ book (Germany).
New comic book ‘Maroubra’ out in October, below is a page in Vision Quest No. 6, that kind of foreshadows the content that will be in the book, as this happened in the same town. See more at http://littlestink.wordpress.com
What is the importance of gender, biological sex status, and sexual orientation to you versus in mainstream culture?
Mainstream culture works to separate, classify and categorize things – in the name of capitalism. The gender binary is another mode of that division. Gender, ability, other identities, are fluid – which is difficult to measure and market for.
Detail when (at what age, why etc.) you first started questioning gender, gender identity and gender expression.
I’ve always wanted to do “as much as I could” and there was pushback from my family, as I was doing things that “girls shouldn’t do”. So I was restricted/forbidden because I was read as female. I read myself as gender-neutral, and still do. I was/am also asexual for long periods of time. I seek to accomplish things that are unrelated to gender. The projection of a female identity onto who I was and who I am continues to the present. I think partly because I have long hair. It’s really frustrating. I don’t consider myself as female but have to keep reminding those around me that this is my identity (gender non-binary).
Tell me about your journey to deciding to use they/them pronouns.
***include when exactly you started feeling that he/she pronouns were not appropriate and exactly when you decided to use they/them pronouns.
Even though I always considered myself in between genders or categories, more like a robot or blobby creature, I only started using “they/theirs” in 2014 as a result of being told I was a “cool lady” all the time. It was irritating people constantly pigeon-holing as this gender, so I had to start asserting that I wasn’t and am not a lady. People forget a lot, and that’s okay, but it’s that initial assumption/insistence that really gets to me.
Why do you personally use the pronouns they/them?
So that “language” finally reflects the way I consider and know myself.
Who did you inform about this decision and how did they respond?
My immediate friends, my housemates, my teenage sister, the people communicating with me the most at the time.
Do any of your other friends use they/them pronouns and if so, when did they decide to use those pronouns and why?
Yes, many friends do, but I can’t speak to their experience.
How has it affected your everyday life?
It feels nice when people get it right, like I fit in my skin, or like they know me properly. And when people forget or misgender me, it kind of reminds me that they don’t know me so well, or maybe they don’t understand me. The same goes for my name. I’m known as “Anna Vo” or “Vo”, so when someone calls me “Anna” it suggests that don’t know me very well.
It’s semantic, but representative of a real social/emotional connection.
What kind of reactions do you receive from people when you explain what pronouns you’d like to be called?
Usually people are pretty accepting of it. Some people are accepting of it, but then don’t practice it. Different levels of engagement I guess.
What is masculinity and femininity to you?
They are false constructs based on historic performances of our ideas of gender. Sometimes they are words used to describe something aesthetically. Which are also ideas based on old paradigms/constructs.
If you could make society gender-free, what would you change first and why?
What would I change first? You mean a global society? I think there are less rights in some societies for girls/daughters – like female circumcision, shame killings, less choice about life directions, entry into certain fields of study, birth control – so I would erase the gender restrictions around gender-based laws and customs.
If society was gender-free, how would that change things?
I think this is answered above, but on top of that, I think people would stop performing to the things they think are expected of them. It’s that allegory of a flea being able to jump like 12+ inches, but once kept in a jar for long enough, it can only jump the height of that jar. People often fulfill only what they think they are limited to.
I was going to write this into the ether, but now I don’t have to. Thank you Vanguard. It’s about how the lens on the Vietnam War is still centered, turned and focussed on the US Experience, rather than the Viet experience.
Written on Black April:
Today is the day my family lost their country, 41 years ago.
+++When I say I’m a product of US Imperialism,
Conceived next to water, on a beach, in a refugee camp, in between borders, in between definite states,
With no nationality, papers, future:
I am asked “Why move here then?”
“My entire family lives in the States, I waited 30 years for a Green Card”
“Then why complain?”
I exercise my right to be a critical dissident resident of the USA.
+++When I say I’m a product of US Imperialism,
I am accused: “Our troops fought and lost their lives for a war that wasn’t even theirs.”
It wasn’t mine either, but no doubt I will never finish paying that debt.
I remind myself I don’t owe anyone anything.
+++Moving to North America:
Means catching the bus and seeing middle-aged men
Middle-aged men in wheelchairs or on crutches
Watching men recognize me –
Not me, but something in me, the shape of my eyes, cheekbone, skintone, black horsehair.
Projecting onto me their historic desires, exotic liaisons, or familiar victims.
Their trauma, their unanswered questions, their imminent reward,
Their expectation of gratefulness or familiarity from me.
Of pandering, of servitude, of interest.
But I am not the innocent farm-girl from the Delta, of 45 years ago.
We exchange a moment tenderness and violence
I hold a moment of carrying their burden, accepting their pain,
Then I cast it off.
+++If I let all the weights fill me, then my shape would become what they see me as,
But I am not the innocent farm-girl from the Delta.
Feb 19: Anna Vo – Girls’ Rock Camp Benefit at High Water Mark
Mar 5: LA Zinefest
Mar 19: Anna Vo – Mother Foucault’s
Mar 26: Comix Thing
Apr 8: Acracy – Fed Up Fest Benefit at Blackwater
Apr 10: Explain – High Water Mark
Apr 14: Rash Deeds – Anarres
April 16: Anna Vo – PSU
April 23: reading – ILWU
April 28: reading – Lewis and Clark College
April 29: lecture – Portland Community College, Cascade Campus
May 6: lecture – Western Oregon University, Salem, OR
May 18: lecture – YWCA, Portland, OR
May 19: Acracy – Blackwater, Portland, OR
May 25: Anna Vo, PPOP fundraiser, Anarres Bookshop, Portland, OR
May 27: Acracy at Anarres Bookshop, Portland, OR
May 31: Acracy at Blackwater, Portland, OR
June 4: Olympia Comics Fest
June 5: Acracy at Blackwater, Portland, OR
June 15-17: Anna Vo, Thirst For Light Summer Solstice Festival, Walville, WA
June 23-25: Denver Zine Fest
July 2: Acracy – Blackwater
July 5: Anna Vo solo, with Erica Freas and more – Anarres Bookshop
July 9-10: Panel and Workshop at Portland Zine Symposium
July 13: Acracy, with Manhunt and more at Analog Cafe
July 15: Acracy, at Alleyway Bar
July 21: Anna Vo solo at Beacon Sound
July 25: Acracy at Anarres
July 28: Acracy at White Owl
July TBA: Rash Deeds
Aug 11: Anna Vo (comedy), with My Parade (sea), Cockeye, The Ragshakers at Blackwater
Aug 13: Wet Brain (MD), Smoke Rings, Mictlan at Blackwater
Aug 21: Anna Vo (noise solo) with Pantone and EMS at Xhurch
Aug 25: Anna Vo solo with Aradia at Black Water
Aug 27: Acracy with 86 Gemini, at Black Water
Aug 28: Acracy at Wilshire Park 3pm- 8pm
Sept 7: Anna Vo at Waypost with 555, EMS, Dolphin Midwives
Sept 14-18: IntersectFest! at Ford Food And Drink and P:Ear
Sept 23: Anna Vo (comedy) with David Liebe Hart at High Water Mark
Nov 2: Anna Vo at YOUTHHOOD: a social engagement + evening of music/spoken word/movement by artists of color + dance party, at Holocene
Plus more shows to be announced!
ANNA VO upcoming tour with friends🙂
New online release on AN OUT RECORDINGS,
the NOUVEAU SHAMANIC LP
From Portugal, one review posted today is found here: