The Forgotten LGBT Pioneers of 1956

In this post to mark LGBT History Month, Dr Simon Hall (University of Leeds) – author of 1956: The World in Revolt (London: Faber and Faber, 2016) – discusses the origins of an obscure magazine, Ladder – the official monthly publication of the pioneering lesbian organisation, the Daughters of Bilitis, which sought to promote “the integration of the homosexual in society”, embracing the politics of ‘respectability’ as a way to advance the cause, and to press the claims, of gay and lesbian Americans. The publication of Ladder’s first issue in October 1956, argues Hall, was a quietly subversive act of a truly revolutionary year. Continue reading