I read a book by Albert Memmi called The Colonizer and the Colonized and in that book he had a paragraph that ended with a quotation: “The colonized are condemned to lose their memory.” And that became for me the overlying understanding that fed both my teaching and the Archives.
I met Joan when we were both active in the Gay Academic Union. And there was a women’s group that got going, but we ended up in the same CR [consciousness-raising] group.
And we started talking about how much was happening in lesbian cultural production, but then – I call us the old-timers – remembered that there had been much lesbian cultural life before the 70s, even before the 60s and yet we had no place to really have tangible evidence of this. And out of this discussion came what was to really, besides teaching and perhaps sexual desire, became the main thrust of my life which was the Lesbian Herstory Archives.
From Hand on the Pulse. Video by Joyce Warshow.
Credit: Hand On The Pulse. Producer/Director: Joyce Warshow, Activa Productions. Distributor: Frameline.