Gidlow, Elsa (1898-1986) Elsa Gidlow, known to many as the "poet-warrior," was unabashedly visible as an independent woman, a lesbian, a writer, and a bohemian-anarchist at a time when such visibility was both unusual and potentially dangerous. Gidlow insisted, "I was, and am, first a human person, then a woman, then a woman whose primary identification and loyalty is with women as lovers and friends."
The L Life is 160 pages of insight into each individual woman’s life, and the women in it are from all over the country. From household names like Jane Lynch to politicians and activists like Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin and Hon. Christine Quinn, the stories they tell are about realizing they were gay, coming out, living out in high-profile positions and moving through life as successful lesbians.
Beginning in the 1970s, Barbara Smith broke new ground as a black feminist, lesbian, activist, author, and book publisher of women of color. She and her twin sister, Beverly Smith, were born on December 16, 1946 in Cleveland, Ohio. Their mother, Hilda Smith, maternal grandmother, and a great aunt raised the girls there. Smith’s activism started in high school when she participated in boycotts, marches and civil rights protests in the 1960s.
Adrienne Cecile Rich (May 16, 1929 – March 27, 2012) was an American poet, essayist and feminist. She was called "one of the most widely read and influential poets of the second half of the 20th century", and was credited with bringing "the oppression of women and lesbians to the forefront of poetic discourse."
Holly Near (June 6, 1949 - ) Near has released more than 25 albums. In 1981, she was one of the first out lesbians interviewed by People magazine. She has been in relationships with both men and women, but rather than identifying as bisexual, she describes herself as a “monogamous feminist.”In 1996, Near was honored with the GALA Choruses Legacy Award for her unique contributions to the gay and lesbian choral movement.