Episode 66: Eye to Eye with Joan Biren

In 1971, photographer Joan Biren, also known as JEB, started doing something revolutionary: documenting the everyday lives of lesbians. This was an era when you could lose everything—your job, your apartment, even your kids— if people knew you were gay. Joan published her first book Eye To Eye: Portraits of Lesbians, in 1979, and the book was reissued this year. In this episode of Can We Talk?, Judith Rosenbaum talks with Joan about her photography and the way her Jewish, lesbian, and feminist identities have intersected throughout her life.

Released October 26, 2021
  • Photograph of Biren and her lover, Sharon, from her book Eye To Eye: Portraits of Lesbians. Credit: JEB (Joan E. Biren)

  • Cover of Joan Biren's book. Courtesy of Joan Biren. 

  • The photographer Joan Biren. Credit: Leigh Mosley. 

  • Photograph of Joan Biren kissing her lover, Sharon.
  • Joan Biren Book Cover
  • Joan Biren Headshot

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Episode 66: Eye to Eye with Joan Biren." (Viewed on September 27, 2023) <https://jwa.org/podcasts/canwetalk/episode-66-eye-eye-joan-biren>.


Help us elevate the voices of Jewish women.

donate now

Get JWA in your inbox

Read the latest from JWA from your inbox.

sign up now