Record It and Fight Back! A History of LGBTQ Activism on Campus

Record It and Fight Back! A History of LGBTQ Activism on Campus

In October of 1975, an unnamed student who went by the
pseudonym “the Astronomer,” published a letter in the Mount
Holyoke student newspaper Choragos declaring her “anniversary
of loneliness”. Although the Astronomer was far from the first
lesbian on campus, with no out lesbians and no support groups,
she felt isolated. Soon after her letter’s publication, lesbian
students began gathering in support of one another every Friday
night in the Eliot House. What blossomed out of the anonymous
article declaring loneliness was support, camaraderie, and the
beginnings of the battles against homophobia.

LGBTQ activism at Mount Holyoke College as we know it existed
in two ways. The first was in support groups. The second was to
rally and protest against homophobia that lesbian and bisexual
students faced. Without the networks of support groups and the
community developing on campus, these fights never could have
been as successful as they were.

**A note on language & inclusion: the LGBTQ community is a
community with rapidly evolving identities and politics. This exhibit
includes language used by people at the time for clarity and out of
respect for their chosen identities and histories. In referring to
modern day movements, this exhibit will use the term LGBTQ
community.

By Chloe Jensen

Record It and Fight Back! A History of LGBTQ Activism on Campus