80s and 90s queer activism

Posted in lgbt by SCHA-LA on February 17, 2010

What did “queer” activism look like in the 80s and 90s, and who was doing it? What are the differences to activists of the 60s / 70s / 00s? What did visibility mean, and what did it look like? Who were your activist heroes of those days?

I’m using “queer” as a blanket term – not to assign identity – but rather to focus on activism through a lens of gender & sexuality, (perhaps) outside of mainstream feminism, and inclusive of HIV/AIDS. Did activism focus on L/G/B/T issues specifically, or were there other issues in which we were visibly active? What of the lesbian ‘sex wars’? What role – if any –  did performance/arts play in activism (remember the NEA 4?) What role did organizations play in activism?

I eagerly seek your memories. And, if you happen to be Los Angeles focused, please leave contact information if you are so inclined.


One Response

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  1. Mark S. King said, on February 24, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    This is going to sound like a plug, but seriously, my book “A Place Like This” outlines the 1980’s in Los Angeles is fairly vivid detail, at least from the perspective of a gay man who became a drug addict who became HIV infected who became an activist. It may be worth checking out; you can read the prologue on my web page,

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