9 Sexy Reasons Why You Should Be Reading the “On Our Backs” Archives

To counter the sex-negative strain of the feminist movement readily available in the news publication Off Our Backs, Debi Sundahl and Myrna Elana created On Our Backs as the sex-positive antithesis in 1984. It was the magazine billed for the “adventurous lesbian”—and we’re not talking about camping here.

1stoobissueImage Credit: Sally Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture

In her “short history” of the early days of On Our Backs, for which she was a contributor and an editor, Susie Bright notes that the publication was created by women who couldn’t be published in either lesbian or mainstream presses because of their “politics and sexuality.” These writers, from Dorothy Allison to Sapphire, found a home in On Our Backs.

Furthermore, Bright explains, the magazine “created created the first mainstream acceptance of ‘women’s erotica’, the practical steps to finding one’s g-spot, and having a free ‘n’ easy attitude toward dildos and vibrators”: “We taught the world how to use a strap-on. We made sex fun and smart for women, something that was entirely in a female self-interest. It went way beyond homosexuality, it was really feminist sex liberation.”

On Our Backs ceased publication in 2006. Recently, the Sally Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture at Duke University opened its archives to the public, allowing anyone and everyone to read every single issue of On Our Backs. For free.

There are innumerable reasons why you should check out the collection. Here are nine fun, sexy reasons to tantalize you:

1. There is SO MUCH BUSH.

BACKS-4

Image Credit: Sally Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture

Bush was in, then it was out…and now it’s back, in some regard, with the “full bush Brazilian” being all the rage (which I take full credit for inventing). No, the bush in OOB is not your Millennial Bush. It is full on, grab me a toothpick bush, and it is kind of glorious.

2) Which means that there is some FULL ON MUFF-DIVING:

BACKS-1

Image Credit: Sally Bingham Center for Women’s History and Culture

Pages: 1 2 3 4

Tags: , , , ,