lesbian pulp and the lavender universe: Radical Lesbians and the Gay Liberation Front

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Radical Lesbians and the Gay Liberation Front

Went to the opening for the photography exhibit of Ellen Shumsky at New York's  Lesbian Herstory Archives in Park Slope. The photographer, as well as the moderator Flavia Rando and poet Fran Winant painted a vivid picture of radical lesbian feminism - preStonewall into the 70s. Got to re-appreciate how much the early activists did to make our lives so much easier today. The marches, the protests, the meetings and the 'more meetings'. These brave and determined women risked getting arrested during regular police raids. They risked their lives, their jobs and their family relationships.

Lesbian and gay bars were usually run by organized crime back then, no one else would financially invest in them, and they were the only ones with enough muscle to keep them open. Don't know if the bar owners really had much of a choice. Of course that still didn't prevent police raids.

Flavia told the story of a friday night out when she was turned away from her favorite lesbian hangout because the bar was raided the day before and they weren't going to let any women wearing 'slacks' enter the bar that night.  

Gay Liberation Front poster

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