Ed Team

A Historical Coming Together

Filed By Ed Team | June 28, 2009 7:30 AM | comments

Filed in: Quote of the Day
Tags: david deitcher, Joan Nestle, lesbian herstory archives, stonewall

"I certainly don't see gay and lesbian history starting with Stonewall ... and I don't see resistance starting with Stonewall. What I do see is a historical coming together of forces, and the sixties changed how human beings endured things in this society and what they refused to endure.... Certainly something special happened on that night in 1969, and we've made it more special in our need to have what I call a point of origin ... it's more complex than saying that it all started with Stonewall."

--Joan Nestle, founder of the Lesbian Herstory Archives, in David Deitcher (ed.), The Question of Equality: Lesbian and Gay Politics in America Since Stonewall.

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Well, of course you have to consider Stonewall in the context of the times and the events that preceded it. I doubt that anyone really believes it "all started with Stonewall" any more than the struggle for racial equality started with Rosa Parks or the Selma march.

Nestle's quote sounds rather dismissive, but I suspect that's because it was also taken out of context.