Feminist Bookstore News

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Feminist Bookstore News
Categoriestrade publication
Frequencybimonthly, quarterly
FounderCarol Seajay
First issueOctober 14, 1976
Final issueSummer 2000
Based inSan Francisco, California, United States

Feminist Bookstore News (FBN) was a trade publication for feminist bookstores. It was active from 1976 until 2000,[1] and issues were published sometimes bimonthly and sometimes quarterly.[2] The publication was described by Tee Corinne as "the glue that kept women booksellers around the world together",[3] acting as a network for feminist booksellers and publishers across the United States and transnationally.[4][5][6]


Feminist Bookstore News was founded by Carol Seajay after the First National Women in Print Conference, intended to help the community that had attended stay in touch with each other.[7] The five largest feminist bookstores donated $100 each ($514 in 2022) to help start the publication.[8] The first issue was published on October 14, 1976.[7]

The publication began as a six-page mimeographed newsletter[9] called Feminist Bookstores Newsletter,[10] supported by funding from Womanbooks, Amazon Bookstore Cooperative, and New Words Bookstore.[11] The name was changed to Feminist Bookstore News in 1984. By 1988 the publication was 48 pages long and issues were professionally printed roughly every two months.[12]

As feminist bookstores became less common due to chain stores and online shopping, the subscriber count of FBN dropped, and publication eventually ceased in 2000.[11]


Book lists were common in FBN, with a focus on connecting readers with resources and supporting authors. Early list topics included “Native American Women,” “Black Women,” and “Young Women & Youth Liberation.”[13]

After Toni Morrison's book The Bluest Eye went out of print in the mid-1970s, FBN promoted a campaign to demonstrate demand to publishers by writing them orders for large quantities of the book. The Bluest Eye was reissued in 1978.[10] A similar effort took place with The Female Man by Joanna Russ, which went out of print in 1977 and was also re-released in 1978 after advocacy from feminist booksellers coordinated by FBN. This type of letter-writing campaign was often repeated in the publication.[14]

FBN popularized the practice of sending a portion of profit to feminist authors when selling copies of their remaindered books, because authors did not receive royalties from publishers for these copies.[15]


  1. ^ "Feminist Bookstore News Records". Online Archive of California. Retrieved 2021-01-20.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  2. ^ "Feminist Bookstore News — Browse by title — Independent Voices". voices.revealdigital.org. Retrieved 2021-01-20.
  3. ^ Kuda, Marie J. (2000-07-26). "Feminist Bookstore News closes - Windy City Times News". Windy City Times. Retrieved 2021-01-20.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  4. ^ Travis 2008, p. 277.
  5. ^ Hogan 2008, p. 597.
  6. ^ Hogan 2016, p. xiv.
  7. ^ a b Sullivan, Elizabeth. "Carol Seajay, Old Wives Tales and the Feminist Bookstore Network". FoundSF. Retrieved 2021-01-20.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  8. ^ Tyrkus, Michael J.; Bronski, Michael, eds. (1977). Gay & Lesbian Biography. St. James Press. ISBN 978-1-55862-237-1 – via Gale In Context: Biography.
  9. ^ Harper, Jorjet (21 June 1990). "Lambda Awards Ceremony: Vegas Rising". Bay Area Reporter. Vol. 20, no. 25. p. 82. Retrieved 26 January 2021.{{cite news}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  10. ^ a b Hogan 2008, p. 599.
  11. ^ a b Travis 2008, p. 288.
  12. ^ Travis 2008, pp. 287–288.
  13. ^ Hogan 2016, pp. 38–39.
  14. ^ Hogan 2016, pp. 50–52.
  15. ^ Hogan 2016, pp. 53–54.


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