Featured this week
- The True History and Adventures of Catharine Vizzani - Catterina Vizzani (1719-1743) was an Italian passing woman who ran away from home at the age of 16, adopted male clothing and thereafter lived as a man under the name Giovanni Bordoni. In 1743 she convinced the niece of a vicar to elope to Rome with her. They were stopped on the way and Giovanni/Catterina was fatally wounded. Her biography was written by the surgeon Giovanni Battista Bianchi who had performed an autopsy (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catterina_Vizzani). The biography was translated into English by John Cleland, who was less than sympathetic to her life.
New Zealand lesbian history
- Lesbian lives - in Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand. Historical overview by Alison J. Laurie
- The Trials of Eric Mareo - for the murder of his wife who had been having an affair with dancer Freda Stark. LILAC has a recent biography of Freda Stark which covers the events.
- The conquest of Mount Cook and other climbs : an account of four seasons' mountaineering on the Southern Alps of New Zealand by Freda du Faur, an Australian lesbian who was the first woman to climb Mt Cook. Probably no lesbian content. LILAC has a recent biorgaphy of Freda.
- The Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Central Library, have two manuscript collections of interest and their
inventories are available online:
Auckland Lesbian Archive from the 1980s and 1990s [Auckland City Libraries Manuscripts Online]
Broadsheet Collective records [Auckland City Libraries Manuscripts Online]
Theses with lesbian themes
and Kamp Ladies: Pre-1970 Lesbian Life in Aotearoa/New Zealand - Alison Laurie's PhD thesis (pdf 2.5 Mb)
This study explores pre-1970 lesbian life and lives in Aotearoa/New Zealand before the impact of women's and gay liberation and lesbian-feminism, using written sources and oral histories.
- nzresearch.org.nz has access to full-text recent New Zealand theses - the link does the "lesbian" search for you.
- Now you see me: the invisibility of older lesbians by Jane Traies (M.Phil. thesis, University of Birmingham)
- The Lives and Experiences of Lesbians over 60 in the UK
by Jane Traies (PhD, University of Sussex)
Jane Taies was interviewed for BBC 4's Women's Hour 17 January - the interview begins 36 minutes into the programme.
Recent New Zealand lesbian writing
- Poems by Libeau
- My Dearest Navaz by Annamarie Jagose (from Sport 9, Spring 1992)
- Love Scenes by Sara Knox (from Sport 16, Autumn 1996) - short story or biography?
- Leves Amores - the short story that got Katherine Mansfield back on a boat to England in quick time, the one that does not appear in the volumes of "Collected Short Stories".
- Ladies Almanack - classic by Djuna Barnes, originally published in 1928 in Paris.
- The Unlit Lamp, and The Well of Loneliness by Radclyffe Hall
- Challenge by Vita Sackville-West (LILAC has a copy)
- Orlando, and Mrs Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
- The Lasf Leaf, a short story from 'The Trimmed Lamp' by O. Henry
- Still hunting for more - suggestions welcome
Biography, memoirs, etc.
- The True History and Adventures of Catharine Vizzani - Catterina Vizzani (1719-1743) was an Italian passing woman who ran away from home at the age of 16, adopted male clothing and thereafter lived as a man under the name Giovanni Bordoni. In 1743 she convinced the niece of a vicar to elope to Rome with her. They were stopped on the way and Giovanni/Catterina was fatally wounded. Her biography was written by the surgeon Giovanni Battista Bianchi who had performed an examination of her remains (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catterina_Vizzani). The biography was translated into English by John Cleland, who was less than sympathetic to her life.
- The Nun Ensign - Catalina de Erauso (ca 1592-ca 1650) - young Basque nun escapes the nunnery and washes up in South America passing as a man
- Mal Cutpurse's Diary - Mary Frith alias Moll [or Mal] Cutpurse - (ca 1584-1659) was another transgressive woman. She lived in London, leading a life of crime - the only way she could see to survive as an unconventional woman.
- A Narrative of the life of Mrs Charlotte Charke written by herself - Charlotte was a transgressive English actor who live from 1713-1760. Biographical notes at wikipedia and GLBTQ and an interesting essay at autostraddle
- Charlotte Cushman: her letters and memories of her life by Emma Stebbins. Charlotte (1816-1876) was an American actress who spent part of her life in Europe, played men's roles on stage, and lived in all-female households with her partners and others. (LILAC has a recent biography of her).
- The Fiery Fountains - Margaret Anderson (one of the Americans in Paris in the 1920s) about her relationship with opera singer Georgette LeBlanc.
- Michael Field by Mary C. Sturgeon. (LILAC has another biography). Information about Michael Field [Katherine Bradley (1846-1914) and Edith Cooper (1862-1913)]
- The Life And Death Of Radclyffe Hall - Una, Lady Troubridge
- My Crystal Ball by Bessie Marbury (1856-1933), a New York theatre impresario and longtime companion of Elsie de Wolfe (1858-1950)
- Impressions that remained : memoirs Volume 1 and Volume 2, by Ethyl Smyth, 1858-1944
History - assorted
The following links lead to recovered texts compiled by British gay historian Rictor Norton <http://rictornorton.co.uk/eighteen/>. He has provided some context and commentary on each text.
- 1698 The Women's Complaint to Venus - a poem
- 1708 The Rival Dutchess; or, Court Incendiary The lesbian loves of Queen Anne's favourite Abigail Masham
- 1715 The Game at Flats A song about two lesbians
- 1720s & earlier Some Cross-Dressing Women - newspaper reports
- 1728 Two Kissing Girls of Spitalfields - satirical verse
- 1732 The Toast Satire on the lesbian "Myra" ... and it includes the word lesbian
- 1739 A Female Dragoon - newspaper obituary
- 1749 The Game of Flats (lesbianism)
- 1760 Some Cross-Dressing Women - newspaper reports
- 1760 A Female Husband Exposed - from the London chronicle
- 1766 Mary East, the Female Husband - from the London chronicle
- 1773 The Adulteress (anon)
- 1777 Sapphic Love in Portugal
- 1778 A Sapphick Epistle - satirical poem
- 1790 Extraordinary Female Affection Ellinor Butler and Sarah Ponsonby, the Ladies of Llangollen
- 1791 Memoirs of Antonina (scandalous novel portraying Marie Antoinette as a lesbian)
- 1821 Cross-Dressing Women in Paris
Gertrude Stein - various
- The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas by Gertrude Stein 
- Three Lives : stories of the Good Anna, Melanctha and the Gentle Lena 
- Selected Writings of Gertrude Stein - includes The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas, and Miss Furr and Miss Skeene
- Matisse Picasso and Gertrude Stein ; with A Long Gay Book and Many Many Women [1909-12]
- Tender Buttons : Objects-Food-Rooms 
- Geography and Plays 
Nonfiction - assorted works
- Dykes Loving Dykes by Bev Jo, Linda Strega, Ruston, a classic lesbian feminist title reworked and published on the internet in 2015
- Lesbian Avengers Handbook, 3rd ed.
- A Room of One's Own by Virginia Woolf
- See also Lesbian wellbeing resources below
- Ursula Bethell (1874-1945), New Zealand lesbian poet - poems and links to information about her at the New Zealand electronic poetry centre. The Six Memorials poems were written on the anniversaries of the death of her partner Effie Pollen. See also Chapter 11 in Alison Laurie's thesis.
- Adrienne Rich (1929-2012) reading her poetry
more info about Adrienne Rich at GLBTQ encyclopedia and wikipedia
- H.D.'s poetry: Hymen and Sea Garden.
- Archways of life - Mercedes de Acosta, 1893-1968
- Selected Poems of Emily Dickinson - info about Emily Dickinson
- Isle of Lesbos - an extensive selection of lesbian poetry by various authors, beginning with Sappho up to more contemporary poets; also excerpts from letters and journals
Lesbian lit websites
- Canadian lesbian literature - an annotated bibliography of Canadian literature with a lesbian content
- Bibliography: Lesbians in the twentieth century at outhistory.org (American)
- Lesbian e-books - has free downloads
- Gormglaith - Radical lesbian separatist novel set in a plausible future with a witchy bent.
- Second helpings - Read these lips - lesbian e-lit in free form - anthologies (pdf files) and a bibliography of anthologies in print
- LibraryQ's lesbian bookmarks - a treasure trove of links to bibliographies, full-text resources, archives, libraries, etc etc
- Dyke Quarterly - an annotated online archive of the issues, letter, ephemera, and some side trips
Early Feminist writing, from past centuries
- A Description of Millenium Hall by Sarah Scott, 1723-1795. There is a description of the work at Wikipedia.
Lesbian wellbeing resources
- Lesbian Zest: tips on how to survive and flourish - brings together stories from 27 Australian lesbians about where they get support and what helps them to flourish. It includes advice and tips on how to thrive as a lesbian. Based on original research by Ea Mulligan and Mary Heath of Flinders University, Australia (pdf 2 Mb).
- Thriving as a bisexual or queer woman: tips on how to flourish - brings together stories from 20 Australian women who identify as bi or queer and who are leading thriving lives. Based on original research by Mary Heath and Ea Mulligan (pdf 1.4 Mb)
- About us - an online legal resource for lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, takataapui, fa'afafine, transsexual, transgender and intersex people [home page has a link to the pdf file]
- Leaflet on breast and cervical cancer prevention - produced by ILGA, together with the Belgian Foundation against Cancer and Belgian lesbian groups (pdf 197kb)
- We're a family - a study for the Families Commission of how lesbians and gay men are creating and maintaining family in New Zealand
- Exploring the Experiences of GLBTI Seniors in Aged Care - a project by the by the Matrix Guild of Victoria with a number of other groups. There are two reports available as pdf files: Stage One - 'My People' (362 kb), and Stage Two - 'Permission to Speak' (511kb)
- We don't have any of those people here - a 2007 report by the by the GLBTI Retirement Association of Western Australia (pdf files)
- GLBTQ - an Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Culture
- Lodestar Quarterly - a journal of LGBT literature, publishing both established and new writers of fiction, poetry, drama, and non-fiction. Produced 2002-2005
- Blithe House quarterly - an online literary magazine featuring new short stories by emerging and established gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered authors
- Genders - peer-reviewed academic journal publishing essays about gender and sexuality in relation to social, political, artistic, and economic concerns.
- OutWeek magazine - This site contains the entire 105 issues of OutWeek Magazine, published in New York from June, 1989 to July, 1991. OutWeek Magazine was the seminal lesbian and gay publication during the peak era of AIDS activism in the late 80s and early 90s. It redefined the role of the activist gay press, not only by reporting the news but also by frequently making news itself. Its aggressive coverage, incisive commentary and in-depth investigative articles on gay rights, politics, AIDS, the arts and popular culture made it a must-read publication far beyond the usual scope of gay magazines. The archive is digitized in a high-resolution pdf format suitable for printing.
- Bint el Nas: do you understand me - a journal for women who are identified ethnicially or culturally with the Arab world and also identify with lesbian/queer community.
- QueerMap.com - invites visitors to explore the cultural meanings and social power of homosexuality. Includes a gallery of queer images from throughout history and around the world.
- outhistory.org - links to all sorts of goodies - American focus.
About this page
We are looking for free Lesbian full-text resources on the internet and listing them here for your convenience. Some are comtemporary "born digital" works, and others are older, out of copyright, and scanned. The Lesbian in Literature, the 3rd edition of Barbara Grier's book (1981), is an indispensible aid for finding our literary history [and this title is available online! as a pdf file]. We are using this classic when searching fulltext online repositories, including the Internet Archive texts and Project Gutenberg for lesbian titles that are out of copyright.
Scanned fulltext works are just - pages including all the marginal notes, flyspots etc etc scanned. All of which gets converted by software to "something" in the raw scanned text files. Project Gutenberg files are corrected by volunteers (hooray), but the Internet Archive has over 1.6 million texts - full of "omet#ing§". PDF files may be less frustrating to read, but are much bigger for downloading than text or html files, and Google charges for them. Files from the NZ Electronic Text Centre are well presented and free.
Most author names in the lists below are linked to biographical information, generally from Wikipedia. Some of the Wikipedia pages link to biographical information written from a queer perspective in the GLBTQ encyclopedia.
We welcome information about other free lesbian fulltext resources on the internet.