Spoken Word

In 2008 we began the Herstories: Audio/Visual Collections project to digitize our spoken word tapes.

In 2008 we began a project to digitize our spoken word tapes. We worked with Prof. Anthony Cocciolo and students at the Pratt School of Information and Library Sciences (Pratt SILS), who began digitizing some of our tapes and created a website to host them for public access.

The first group digitized by Pratt SILS was a series of interviews Joan Nestle conducted over a number of years with Mabel Hampton (1902–1989). Mabel was an African American Lesbian activist who was closely connected with the Archives.

Subsequently, Pratt students digitized our collection of Audre Lorde’s public speeches, readings, and panel presentations. Other collections followed.

All of these can be found here (http://herstories.prattinfoschool.nyc/omeka/) along with digitized interviews from “Boots of Leather, Slippers of Gold: A History of a Lesbian Community,” which formed the basis of Liz Kennedy and Madeline Davis’s book of the same name. Pratt students are currently digitizing audio cassettes and videos documenting part of the work of ACT UP NY.

The Archives has approximately 3,000 oral herstory tapes in our Spoken Word Collection. Since 2012, the Spoken Word Project at LHA has been working to digitize these cassettes. Working with coordinators, interns and volunteers, the project is progressing well. Visitors may listen to digitized and analog recordings from the Spoken Word Project / Audio Collection during the Archives’ open hours.

For particular research questions, please email us at our general email address: lesbianherstoryarchives@gmail.com


Herstories Digital Collection

The Lesbian Herstory Archives is home to the world’s largest collection of materials by and about Lesbians and their communities. “Herstories: Audio/Visual Collections” contains digitized copies of some of the three thousand oral herstory cassettes in the Archives’ Spoken Word Collection and 950 videotapes in the Video Collection.

Two Black Lesbians among a group holding signs that read "Lesbian Herstory Archives: In Memory of the Voices We Have Lost."