Film still from a 1960s drag cocktail party, picnic, and pool party, c. 1968-1969

The Battle over Drag in 1960s San Francisco

The organized struggle for rights has been shaped by debates over the relationship between gender presentation and sexuality.
Jeannace June Freeman

The Lesbian As Villain or Victim

In Oregon in the 1960s, the debate over capital punishment hinged on shifting interpretations of the gendered female body.
Harvey Milk at Gay Pride, San Jose 1978

Harvey Milk’s Gay Freedom Day Speech: Annotated

Five months before his assassination in 1978, Harvey Milk called on the president of the United States to defend the rights of gay and lesbian Americans.
Donna Summer, 1976

The Year The Grammys Honored Disco

In 1980, The Grammys gave disco its own category, but the genre was already receding into invisibility.
A stained glass window depicting Hildegard von Bingen at Église Sainte-Foy, Alsace

Abortion Remedies from a Medieval Catholic Nun(!)

Hildegard von Bingen wrote medical texts describing how to prepare abortifacients.
Etching: A wet nurse breast feeding the Duke of Burgundy, grandson of Louis XIV

Source: https://www.jstor.org/stable/community.24839779

How Wet-Nursing Stoked Class Tensions

“[N]o man can justly doubt, that a childs mind is answerable to his nurses milk and manners.”
Man buying garters from a female shop assistant

Sex Panic at the Department Store

Were shopgirls selling more than scents at the perfume counter? Three investigators were determined to find out.
An image from the cover of the September 4, 1980 issue of Philadelphia Gay News

Discovering the “Gay Lifestyle” through 1970s Magazines

The gay men's magazines QQ and Ciao! were unabashedly liberated, but they still catered to an exclusive audience.

How LGBTQ+ Activists Got “Homosexuality” out of the DSM

The first DSM, created in 1952, established a hierarchy of sexual deviancies, vaulting heterosexual behavior to an idealized place in American culture.
Photograph: Marchers carrying a banner with the words 'Visibly Lesbian'

Source: Steve Eason/Getty

How NOW Started Standing Up for Lesbians

If it had been up to national leaders alone, it might have taken much longer.