The period between the publication in 1957 of the liberalising Wolfenden Report and the introduction in 1987 of the homophobic Section 28 was characterised by unprecedented optimism and political activism among lesbians and gay men in Britain. But the law and its shortcomings never determined their whole political and cultural agenda and Radical Records explores the diverse and sometimes conflicting attempts of lesbian and gay people to build a new world for themselves and those they loved. The contributors recount their own personal narratives of how they struggled to re-define their identities, to explore non-traditional expressions of intimacy, to reclaim public spaces, to engage with the HIV epidemic, to build alliances and, generally, to make radical transformations of their lives. The re-issue of this important work, first published in 1988, gives its readers an opportunity to re-visit that turbulent time through the voices of its participants.
‘A stimulating criss-crossing of history and biographies.’ - Mary McIntosh
1. Introduction 2. Battling for Wolfenden 3. Scotland: Against the Odds 4. Memoirs of an Anti-Heroine 5. A Community of Interests 6. Coming to Terms 7. Separatism: A Look Back at Anger 8. Faltering From the Closet 9. The Importance of Being Lesbian 10. Living on the Fringes – in More Ways than One 11. Oi! What About us? 12. ‘Irrespective of Race, Sex, Sexuality…’ 13. Voices in my Ear 14. The Liberation of Affection 15. Amnesia and Antagonism: Anti-Lesbianism in the Youth Service 16. Lesbian Mothers: The Fight for Child Custody 17. Parrot Cries 18. Normal Channels 19. The Should We, Shouldn’t We? Debate 20. One Step to Heaven 21. Somewhere over the Rainbow 22. No Going Back