Special Issue

Outside the Mainstream Press: Language, Materiality, and Temporality in Microzines

  • Jutta Ernst (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz)
  • Sabina Fazli (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz)
  • Oliver Scheiding (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz)


This article examines aesthetic strategies employed in the modernist little magazine and contemporary independent magazines. Language, materiality, and temporality are found to be key elements for experimental multimodal expressions challenging mainstream periodical cultures. In order to emphasize parallels between precarious, noncommercial, and innovative micro-publishing practices of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, we propose to use the term ‘microzine’. In three case studies, we offer analyses of linguistic defamiliarization, typography and design, and the representation of temporal experiences of migrancy to highlight the entanglement of aesthetic strategies as well as their persistence over time. This comparison of the Little Review (1914–29), NXS (2017–2022), and Burnt Roti (2016–) opens up possibilities to view disparate non-mainstream magazine projects as potent incubatory spaces for new magazinal assemblages.

Keywords: assemblage, independent magazine, language, little magazine, materiality, microzine

How to Cite:

Ernst, J. & Fazli, S. & Scheiding, O., (2023) “Outside the Mainstream Press: Language, Materiality, and Temporality in Microzines”, Journal of European Periodical Studies 7(2), 97–114. doi: https://doi.org/10.21825/jeps.84791

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Published on
08 Feb 2023
Peer Reviewed