To increase access to the fan culture that was integral to the rise of science fiction in the 20th century, the University of Iowa Libraries is digitizing 10,000 fanzines. The project, announced last month, will focus on materials from the James L. “Rusty” Hevelin Collection, from elaborately hand-illustrated titles to some of the first writing by authors of the genre.
The collection was acquired by the library in 2012 following the death of Hevelin in 2011. A lifelong sci-fi fan, Hevelin hitchhiked in 1941 to his first science fiction convention and was immersed in the culture, collecting fanzines, creating his own, and helping to organize conventions. Fanzines like the Futurian War Digest from the 1940s made in Leeds, England, and The Phantagraph published in the 1930s and 40s in New York were DIY materials imagined for a growing sci-fi community and often distributed by hand. They also provided an accessible platform for writers including Ray Bradbury, Robert Heinlein, and Arthur C. Clark who would go from fanzines to the icons of the genre. As Curator of Science Fiction and Popular Culture Collections Peter Balestrieri explains in the announcement: “Some of the earliest works by these writers can be found in Rusty’s collection of fanzines, along with important writing from all of the major fans who created this new form of popular culture.”
The digital database is just part of the University of Iowa’s concentration on fan-generated cultural history, and its libraries have an extensive holding of fandom-related collections, such as fanzines for The Man From U.N.C.L.E. and Star Trek. As the Hevelin Collection materials are digitized they’ll be added to the UI Libraries’ DIY History interface, which already includes transcription projects like the correspondence of railroad baron Thomas C. Durant on building the transcontinental railroad, and culinary manuscripts dating back to the 1600s. And in true fandom form, a select group of aficionados will have direct access to the transcribing and annotation of the sci-fi fanzines as part of the project.
You can follow the digitization of the fanzines at the Hevelin Collection Tumblr, where they’ll be posting progress updates.
Read more about the Hevilin Collection digitization at the UI Libraries blog.
The Mexican artist confronts gun violence and nuclear power through sculpture, print, performance, and video work.
Ten artists will receive studio space and access to faculty, staff, students, workshops, and programming at an arts institution in the heart of Philadelphia.
Increased oil tanker truck traffic would “seriously degrade” the experience of viewing the canyon’s Indigenous rock art, said one advocate of the site.
This week, AP Style Twitter goes wild, the “enshittification” of TikTok, and did people actually come flooding back to New York City after COVID?
Join the New-York Historical Society on February 10 for a virtual conversation about our changing relationship to the natural world with Julie Decker, John Grade, and LaMont Hamilton.
Scores of cultural heritage sites are in ruins amid a fragile truce and an ongoing war of narratives.
Jafar Panahi was arrested last July, after he participated in protests at the notorious Evin prison.
Designed by artist Christine Egaña Navin, the items will be offered by Project Art Distribution at this weekend’s NADA Flea Market.
The French painter felt he had to rise to the challenge of one question above all things else: What exactly is it to be a modern artist?
Presented by Northwestern’s Block Museum and McCormick School of Engineering, this new exhibition seeks empathy at the boundaries of life. On view in Evanston, Illinois.
Philipsz’s haunting sound and video artworks serve as a poignant witness to the lives and artistry of victims of the Holocaust.
Passamaquoddy citizen Chris Newell is imparting his knowledge of the Wabanaki Confederacy to advise on the Portland Museum of Art’s expansion.