Placing Historical Lesbian Communities

Authors: Julian Barr*, University of Washington
Topics: Sexuality, Historical Geography, Women
Keywords: lesbian, LGBTQ, historical geography, place, archives
Session Type: Virtual Paper
Day: 4/9/2021
Start / End Time: 11:10 AM / 12:25 PM
Room: Virtual 50
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


In this paper, stemming from my dissertation that attempts to examine the historical geography of lesbian and queer women in mid-Twentieth Century Seattle, I question how did butch/femme culture influence Seattle’s queer geographies and how was that influence changed by the social and political realities of lesbian and queer women? Using archival methods, this paper will describe the experiences of lesbian and queer women’s lives and places in Seattle in the mid-Twentieth Century. This work examines the effect of gender expression and sexuality along with age, class, and race had on the development of these neighborhoods within the city in creating places for lesbian and queer women. This paper presents some findings and the use of archived oral histories as method.

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