Jeanne Cordova



• "Anita Bryant's Anti-Gay Crusade"
--- Essay in The Right Side of History: 100 Years of LGBTQI Activism (Cleis Press, June 2015)
• "Marriage Throws A Monkey Wrench"
--- Essay in Untangling the Knot: Queer Voices on Marriage, Relationships & Identity (Ooligan Press, Fall 2014)


A Memoir of Love & Revolution

LAMBDA LITERARY AWARD winner: Lesbian Memoir/Biography
PUBLISHING TRIANGLE : Judy Grahn lesbian non-fiction award
STONEWALL BOOK AWARD: Israel Fishman Non-Fiction Award Honor Book
2013 RAINBOW LIST : The GLBT Roundtable of the American Library Association


    " A riveting unique first hand telling of a dangerous, fractious, creative lesbian time, the lesbian feminist 70s with their messy, sexy, bold social and personal visions live again on Cordova's pages; she was thick in the middle of things, as a journalist, as an activist, as a lover." --Joan Nestle, editor of A Persistent Desire, A Femme Butch Reader and GENDERQUEER, Voices from Beyond the Sexual Binary.

    For LGBT people who care about activism, especially those young enough to have no memory of those iconic times, Córdova's "memoir of love and revolution" should be a must-read.” --By Patricia Nell Warren, Bilerico Project

    " ...content-rich and driven by a compelling plot. These two things make reading 'When We Were Outlaws' a joy." -Lambda Literary Review by Julie R. Enszer

  • "...such an important addition to the literary canon of LGBT non-fiction. The book manages to be captivating, heartbreaking, and gratifying all at once.” --The Advocate by Diane Anderson Minshall

  • "One of the best reads of the year comes from Jeanne Cordova.  Her memoir  chronicles a time in the 1970s when she was a young lesbian reporter and activist ... fighting for lesbian visibility and equality in Los Angeles, as well as navigating her love life.  The combination of the two, along with some nostalgic waxing on womyn's music and politics of the times makes this a must read" --

  • "...When We Were Outlaws by Jeanne Cordova reminds you why you like being a lesbian in the first place" -

Read the whole list of REVIEWS with links here ....


Interview with an Outlaw!

Pioneering LGBT journalist and activist Jeanne Córdova is back with a third
book, When We Were Outlaws: a memoir of Love & Revolution.
A sweeping memoir, a raw and intimate chronicle of a young activist torn between conflicting personal longings and political goals.
This is a rare view of a radical lesbian activist’s life during the early struggle for gay rights, Women’s Liberation, and the New Left of the 1970s.

Joan Nestle, grande dame femme author, blurbs the book saying it’s "A riveting,
first-hand telling of a dangerous creative time. The lesbian feminist ‘70s with their
messy, sexy, bold social and personal visions live again on Córdova’s pages!"

Former editor of The Advocate, Mark Thompson, calls Córdova “the James Dean
of the lesbian scene.” And Stuart Timmons, author of The Trouble With Harry Hay,
comments “this story discusses the contradictions of feminism, the then real
debate about violent overthrow of the government, and the huge divide and
uneasy alliance between lesbians and gay men.”

In 1975, the twenty-something activist Córdova is living with one woman and
falling in love with another, but her passionate beliefs tell her that her first duty
is “to the revolution.” She becomes an investigative reporter for the famous,
underground L.A. Free Press and finds herself involved with the Weather
Underground, Angela Davis, and Emily Harris of the Symbionese Liberation Army.
At the same time she is creating her own newsmagazine, The Lesbian Tide,
destined to become the voice of the national lesbian feminist movement.

With an introduction by renowned lesbian historian Lillian Faderman, When
We Were Outlaws
paints a vivid portrait of activism and the search for self-identity,
set against the turbulent landscape of multiple struggles for social change that
swept hundreds of thousands of Americans into the streets. By turns provocative
and daringly honest, Córdova renders emblematic scenes of the era—ranging
from strike protests to utopian music festivals, to underground meetings with
radical fugitives—with period detail and evocative characters.

For those who came of age in the ‘70s, and for those who weren’t around but
still ask ‘What was it like?’ –Outlaws takes you back to re-live it. It also offers
insights about ethics, decision making and strategy, still relevant today.



Most Recent Blogs

Recent Excerpts and Essays

Contact Me

Get Outlaws: At indie bookstores
Order online at
Skylight Books.  or


- JUNE 12, 2015:  Etheridge Award at WeHo Dyke March, 2015


June 5 - Unveiling of Wells Fargo LGBT Los Angeles history mural
July 12 - ONE Gay & Lesbian Archives, 'Coming Out West' with Rev. Troy Perry
July 24 - OLOC Writers Night (at 'Old Lesbians Organizing for Change' conference)

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