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History of lesbianism in the United States
To Believe in Women
A groundbreaking women's history of America explores the roles of lesbian women in the battle to procure rights and privileges for Americans of both genders, arguiing that these early female leaders had lesbian relationships free from the constraints of traditional ties that would have impeded their goals. Taking up where her classic, Surpassing the Love of Men , left off, Lillian Faderman reveals that many of the early leaders who fought for women's suffrage, higher education for women, and women's entrance into "male" professions would in today's parlance be called lesbians: "women who lived in committed relationships with other women. In fact, they were more or less obliged to try to better women's lives, Faderman argues, for there was no man to represent them at the polls or support them financially. Although Elizabeth Cady Stanton's husband and seven children failed to distract her from the cause, her friend Susan B.
To Believe in Women: What Lesbians Have Done for America-A History by Lillian Faderman
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This article addresses the history of lesbianism in the United States. Unless otherwise noted, the members of same-sex female couples discussed here are not known to be lesbian rather than, for example, bisexual , but they are mentioned as part of discussing the practice of lesbianism—that is, same-sex female sexual and romantic behavior. Laws against lesbian sexual activity were suggested but usually not created or enforced in early American history. In , John Cotton proposed a law for Massachusetts Bay making sex between two women or two men a capital offense, but the law was not enacted.