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COLLECTION Identifier: 85-M30--85-M66: T-170

Papers of Charlotte Bunch, 1967-1985


Correspondence, writings, reports, etc., of Charlotte Bunch, lesbian feminist activist and writer.


  • Creation: 1967-1985

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Collection is open for research. An appointment is necessary to use any audiovisual material.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Charlotte Bunch is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


4 linear feet ((4 cartons) plus l folio folder, 26 folio+ folders, 2 oversize folders, 1 supersize folder, 8 audiotapes)

This collection contains articles, essays, songs, and scripts on the women's liberation movement; correspondence, notes, press releases, pamphlets, newsletters, and mailing lists from many women's organizations and conferences, including local groups in Cleveland, Ohio, and Washington, D.C., the National Organization for Women, and the National Women's Studies Association; material on lesbian/feminism; correspondence, minutes, financial records, memoranda, reports, and bylaws of the National Gay Task Force; and drafts and correspondence with authors which reflect Charlotte Bunch's editing work.

Folder headings are those of Charlotte Bunch. Information in brackets has been added by the processor.


One of four children of Charles Pardue Bunch and Marjorie Adelaide (King) Bunch, Charlotte Bunch was born in West Jefferson, North Carolina, on October 13, 1944. Later that year her family moved to Artesia, New Mexico, where she attended the public schools before enrolling at Duke University in 1962. A history major, Bunch graduated magna cum laude in 1966. Her college years were marked by numerous extracurricular activities, including work with the Young Women's Christian Association; the Methodist student movement; a poverty program in Oakland, California; and various civil rights groups.

In the summer following her graduation, she was a youth delegate to the World Council of Churches Conference on Church and Society in Geneva, Switzerland, and attended a meeting on China sponsored by the World Student Christian Federation. That autumn Bunch began a one-year term in Washington, D.C., as president of the University Christian Movement, an ecumenical organization concerned with social change. The following year she served as student intern at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, exploring the interaction of education and politics.

Moving to Cleveland in 1968, Bunch helped to organize both the local women's liberation movement and the first national women's liberation conference, held in Chicago in November 1968. She worked on the staff of the campus ministry at Case Western Reserve University before returning to Washington in 1969 as a visiting fellow at the Institute of Policy Studies (IPS). Continuing her active involvement in the women's liberation movement, she helped to develop a women's studies curriculum that was taught at the Washington Area Free University. Her work on the Mobilization Committee to End the War in Vietnam led to a trip to North Vietnam and Laos in 1970 and to participation in the International Conference of North American and Indochinese Women held in Canada in 1971.

Since 1971, Bunch has worked primarily to develop a lesbian/feminist ideology nationally and a lesbian/feminist community in Washington. She continued as a fellow at IPS until 1977, and has taught a variety of courses on feminism at a number of colleges and universities. She has lectured widely, been a participant or facilitator at a number of international workshops and conferences, and served from 1979 to 1980 as consultant to the secretariat for the World Conference for the United Nations Decade on Women.

Charlotte Bunch is the coeditor of a number of books, including The New Women: A Motive Anthology on Women's Liberation (1970), Learning Our Way: Essays in Feminist Education (1983), and Not By Degrees: Essays in Feminist Education, as well as one of the founders and editors of Quest: A Feminist Quarterly, (from 1974 until its demise in 1984) and The Furies (1972-1973), a lesbian/feminist newspaper. The author of numerous articles and pamphlets, she is active in many organizations, including the National Women's Program Committee of the American Friends Service Committee, the National Women's Conference, and the National Organization for Women; she is a board member of the New York Feminist Art Institute and the National Gay Task Force.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession numbers: 85-M30, 85-M42, 85-M47, 85-M66

The papers of Charlotte Bunch were given to the Schlesinger Library in February, March, and April 1985 by Charlotte Bunch.

Related Material:

There is related material at the Schlesinger Library; see Charlotte Bunch Additional papers, 1950-1988 (87-M149--88-M18), Charlotte Bunch Additional papers, ca.1944-2010 (MC 708), and Quest: A Feminist Quarterly Records, 1970-1985 (MC 753).


  1. Carton 1: Folders 1-5, 9-10, 12-14, 16, 18-19, 21-22, 24-27, 29-30
  2. Carton 2: Folders 31-32, 34, 36, 38-43, 45, 47v-49, 51-52a, 54-57, 59-60, 62-64, 66-68
  3. Carton 3: Folders 71-72, 74, 76-82, 84-88, 90-91, 93-103, 105-113
  4. Carton 4: Folders 114-121, 123-137, 139-144, 146-148, 150-152

Processing Information

Preliminary inventory: May 1985

By: Anne Engelhart

Bunch, Charlotte, 1944- . Papers of Charlotte Bunch, 1967-1985: A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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