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Joan Robins papers, 1972-1991 LSC.1952
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use and Reproduction
  • Preferred Citation
  • Provenance/Source of Acquisition
  • Processing Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization and Arrangement

  • Title: Joan Robins papers
    Identifier/Call Number: LSC.1952
    Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 0.4 linear feet (1 document box)
    Date (inclusive): 1972-1991
    Abstract: The Joan Robins Papers contain documents related to various lesbian and feminist organizations and conferences. Also included is information related to organizing in defense of the Equal Rights Amendment and reproductive rights, and against the Family Protection Act.
    Language of Materials: Materials entirely in English.
    Physical Location: Stored off-site at SRLF. All requests to access special collections materials must be made in advance through out electronic paging system using the "Request items" button.
    Creator: Robins, Joan

    Conditions Governing Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. All requests to access special collections materials must be made in advance through out electronic paging system using the "Request items" button.

    Conditions Governing Use and Reproduction

    Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Joan Robins Papers (Collection 1952). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Provenance unknown.
    This collection is part of an outreach and collection-building partnership between the June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives , the UCLA Center for the Study of Women (CSW)  and the UCLA Library .

    Processing Information

    Processed by Molly S. Jacobs, 2011. Description enhanced and further physical processing by Sabrina Ponce in 2017.


    Joan Ellen Robins, also known as Joan Hoffman, was born in 1947. She was the co-founder, along with Dorothy Bricker and Marianne Yatrovsky, of the first consciousness - raising (CR) group in Los Angeles. They convened at the Haymarket Center. The group grew rapidly and was necessarily moved to a church in South Central Los Angeles that would accommodate their larger attendance. The group was notorious for dramatic and aesthetically detailed protesting tactics.
    Joan Robins also started the Women's Center in Los Angeles, which hosted various CR groups as well as labor union groups and lesbian activist groups that had splintered from the Gay and Lesbian Center of Los Angeles. The group Lesbian Feminist, of which Robbins was an original member, originated at the Women's Center. Lesbian Feminist held the first formalized dialogue concerning divergences and convergences as well as shared political goals for gay, straight, and bisexual people. They also interrupted the meetings of The National Organization for Women (NOW) in order to bring lesbian visibility to the center of their agenda. Joan Robbins was also a founding member of the anti-rape squad.
    In 1968, Joan Robins wrote the Handbook of Women's Liberation alongside her then husband, Frank Hoffman. The handbook was only available at the Women's Center.
    In 1973, Joan Robins helped to organize the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women. She became their director of education in 1975 and handled media appearances, commentary and outreach programming. She eventually left the organization as its rapid growth could not be supported by its infrastructure.
    She attended the University of Southern California School of Social Work and is a licensed medical social worker. She also holds a Bachelor's degree from University of California, Los Angeles.

    Scope and Content

    The Joan Robins Papers contain documents related to various lesbian and feminist organizations and conferences, as well as several personal items. These papers include organizational documents, flyers, information pamphlets, newsletters, press releases, and handwritten notes. The collection dates from 1972-1985.

    Organization and Arrangement

    Materials are arranged chronologically.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    June L. Mazer Lesbian Archive at UCLA.
    June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives.
    Lesbian activists--California--Archives.
    Robins, Joan, 1947---Archives.