Ann Bannon, real name: Ann Weldy, (b. 1932) is an American author. She is known for The Beebo Brinker Chronicles. The Chronicles, six novels in all, depict the lives of several lesbians in Greenwich Village in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. Groundbreaking works, they were remarkable for their portrayal of lesbianism in a human and complex manner. They were also vastly influential in the way lesbians came to see themselves, especially before the Stonewall Rebellion. Published as pulp fiction, then forgotten, The Chronicles were rediscovered in the 1980’s. They are taught now in women’s and LGBTQ studies. Bannon was elected into the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival Hall of Fame and won the Alice B Award and the Lambda Literary Foundation Pioneer Award. A play based on her books has been staged numerous times, and a television series is currently being developed.
Ann Bannon is a fine writer. Her books were a revelation about lesbianism.
“To the persistent surprise of many of us, and of the critics who found us such an easy target years ago, the books by, of and for women found a life of their own. They—and we—may still not be regarded as conventionally acceptable ‘nice’ literature, as it were—but I have come to value that historical judgment. We wrote the stories no one else could tell. And in so doing, we captured a slice of life in a particular time and place that still resonates for members of our community.”