- Format: Paperback
- ISBN: 978-0-7190-8992-3
- Pages: 224
- Publisher: Manchester University Press
- Price: £15.99
- Published Date: August 2013
- BIC Category: History, Relating to Gay men, Gay & Lesbian studies, European history, HISTORY / Social History, HISTORY / Europe / Great Britain / 20th Century, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Gay Studies, Gay & Lesbian Studies, Humanities / British & Irish history
Using a rich array of oral histories and archival sources, Tomboys and bachelor girls provides the first detailed academic study of lesbian identity and culture in post-war Britain. Described by psychiatrists as immature and neurotic, and widely ignored as taboo by mainstream society, lesbians nevertheless recognised and accepted their same-sex desire and sought out women like themselves.
Challenging the conventional picture of the post-war decades as years of austerity and conservative femininity, this book traces the emergence of a vibrant lesbian social scene in Britain, centred on the metropolitan nightclubs of post-war London, but also developing across the country, through lesbian magazines and social organisations.
This fascinating book brings to life the rich history of post-war lesbian culture for the scholarly and general reader alike.
Rebecca Jennings is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Modern History at Macquarie University, Sydney
1. Tomboys, crushes and the construction of adolescent lesbian identities
2. The 'all-out career woman' and narratives of lesbianism at work
3. Lesbian domesticity: Relationships and the home
4. The Gateways Club and the emergence of a post-war lesbian subculture
5. 'Arena three' and the articulation of a collective lesbian identity