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Eating FireMy Life as a Lesbian Avenger$
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Kelly Cogswell

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780816691159

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816691159.001.0001

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Vivas to Those Who Have Failed

Vivas to Those Who Have Failed

Chapter:
(p.199) IV. Vivas to Those Who Have Failed
Source:
Eating Fire
Author(s):

Kelly Cogswell

Publisher:
University of Minnesota Press
DOI:10.5749/minnesota/9780816691159.003.0004

Ana and I move to a neighborhood that used to be full of lesbians, Colette, Janet Flanner, Natalie Barney, but they’ve been entirely erased. We organize a group, Goudou Explosive to march in the Paris LGBT Pride parade. When organizers of a lesbian conference in Toulouse, France invite Ana and me to give a presentation on the Avengers, we try to research online and discover we’ve been erased, too. Including our techniques for grassroots organizing in rural conservative states. Which would have come in handy during the de-gayed campaign that failed to prevent the passage of antigay Prop 8 in California. That sparks the Lesbian Avenger Documentary Project. We return to the U.S. A few months after the Arab Spring, when new media and street activism are perfectly in sync, I visit Kentucky to give a lecture on the Avengers. I meet young queers who think it’s cool I live in New York and had been a Lesbian Avenger, and gone as far away as Paris, while I’m impressed they’re still at home. Seeing myself through their eyes, my lifetime of striving and resistance suddenly seems as much a part of the American saga as any single victory, any defeat.

Keywords:   lesbian, LGBT, activism, social change, memoir, New York, Kentucky, Cuba, France, citizenship

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