Notable People of Filipin@ Ancestry
Margarita Alcantara is a proud queer Filipina mestiza, and the editress and publisher of the zine, Bamboo Girl, which she founded in 1995 to explore her identity as a mixed blood Filipina. It has been a tool to create dialogue on various issues intersecting race, sex, and gender. Bamboo Girl Zine has also been featured in various books, such as Immigration and American Popular Culture: An Introduction, Maiden USA, Manifesta: Young Women, Feminism, and the Future, Asian American Dreams: The Emergence of an American People, Third Wave Agenda: Being Feminist, Doing Feminism, as well as publications such as The New York Times, Utne Reader, Village Voice, Jane, AsianWeek, and Bust.
She is also a published writer, performance artist, videomaker, and community activist within the Filipin@, Asian Pacific Islander (API), feminist and LGBT communities. She has also trained in the art of Filipino Weapon Fighting.
She was co-founder of the Campaign for Safer Subway Stations, launched in response to the rape and beating robbery of a Filipina American woman, as well Kilawin Kolektibo, a New York lesbian/bi/transgender Filipina collective. Alcantara was also active with Gabriela Network, a Philippine-US women’s solidarity organization and the New York Chapter of Filipin@ Civil Rights Activists (FilCRA).
Alcantara addresses numerous topics through lectures, spoken word, workshops, song, and performance art, including: diversity issues, alternative media, feminist issues, the exoticizing of the Asian American female, community organizing, immigrant women’s issues, women and labor, lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender (LGBT) consciousness, forms of creative expression, and martial arts/self defense.
Her writing is featured in numerous publications, including: Pinay Power: Peminist Critical Theory, That Takes Ovaries!: Bold Females and Their Brazen Acts, Dragon Ladies: Asian American Feminists Breathe Fire, Young Wives’ Tales: New Adventures in Love and Partnership, and Girls’ Guide to Taking Over the World: The Best Writing From Girl Zines. She has also written for journals and magazines, including Frontiers Journal and maganda magazine.
She is the illustrator for all covers of Bamboo Girl Zine, and her artwork has been featured on the cover of the book, Consequence: Beyond Resisting Rape. Her artwork was also featured in the “Women Comic Artists Exhibition” at Bluestockings Bookstore in New York City.
Alcantara has a Bachelors of Arts in Individualized Study from New York University, and recently graduated with a Masters of Science in Acupuncture from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine – New York. She is currently a licensed and practicing acupuncturist in New York City.