Karla Jay

“I told no one I went to college with that I was a lesbian, I never told anyone. I think that was what the 60’s were like for many of us—we grew up in silence and isolation, and that’s why consciousness-raising in Redstockings was so appealing, because so much of our lives we could not speak of.”

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Karla Jay, PHD, was a member of Redstockings.   She participated in many early feminist events, including the takeover of the Ladies Home Journal offices.  She was part of the women’s collective at the underground newspaper Rat and helped organize the Lavender Menace action at the Second Congress to Unite Women in 1970.  She organized the “First National Ogle-in,” to protest the harassment of a woman (because she was “well-endowed) by Wall Street brokers every day. Karla Jay was an early member of New York’s Gay Liberation Front and was its first female chair.  She has written, edited, or translated ten books, including Tales of the Lavender Menace:  A Memoir of Liberation.  She is Distinguished Professor Emerita at Pace University where she taught English, Women’s Studies, and LGBTQ Studies for 39 years.