The below directory is a work in progress and consists of international feminist libraries and archives that we are aware of. We are also aware that there are many wonderful, new projects that might not be on our radar yet.
This association works to collect the private archives of activists and feminist associations and the archives concerning the cause of women with the longer purpose of saving them, classifying them, and making them available for research.
Constructed by women artists themselves, like the VBKÖ itself has lived through and changed with history from the latter days of imperialism, to the fall of the Habsburg Empire and WWI, Austro-Fascism, the Nazi Era, but also through the progressive movements in the arts in Austria all the way to the current expansion of the European Union and the austerity cuts in public funding.
Seeks to conserve and maintain women’s history and memory, as well as the women’s/feminist movement in the Piedmont region – both the national and international dimension.
Based in Amsterdam, Netherlands, it collects, stores and documents material about the position of women in all fields – such as law, politics, labor, care, history, art, literature, science, religion, sexuality, gender equality and feminism, in the past and the present, from within and abroad.
The Australian Lesbian and Gay Archives was established in 1978 and is the only community group in Australia that actively collects and preserves LGBTIQ material from across the country, and makes it readily accessible. The collections include material of national or international scope, but the heart of the Archives’ work is the collection and preservation of the historical life of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities of Australia. It includes the works of writers, artists, photographers, and performers; the papers of leaders; the records of community organizations; the posters, flyers, buttons, matchbooks of political movements or trends or bars and other venues; the stories that record lives of those in the community.
The Australian Women’s Archives Program (AWAP), established in 1999 as the Australian Women’s Archives Project, is a long standing collaboration between the University of Melbourne and the National Foundation for Australian Women (NFAW). It was created to build knowledge and recognition of the social, cultural, historical and economic contribution made by Australian women to public and private life.
The BdM’s collection consists of approx. 25.000 volumes, and also magazines, comics, posters, badges, and stamps. It includes some works from the XIX century and the first third of the XXth century which are out of print today, and which were purchased in antique dealers in Used & Rare Bookshops and The Rastro street market.
Situated in Bologna, Italy, the Italian Women’s Library was born at the end of the Seventies as part of Women’s Documentation, Research and Initiative Centre, thanks to a project originated by Associazione Orlando – an independent feminist organisation – which wished to create an institution devoted to women’s culture and political activism.
Created from a massive collection started in 1897 by journalist and activist Marguerite Durand. It holds a collection of materials on French feminism and the struggle of French suffragettes for equality.
University of Angers library hosts the Centre des Archives du Féminisme (Feminist archives Center), the main repository for French contemponary feminist archives in France, which work in collaboration with Bibliothèque Marguerite Durand and the Association Archives du Féminisme.
First started as a Black History Month experiment where Asmaa Walton would post the covers of anthologies, art books, exhibition catalogues, and monographs from Black visual culture, the idea expanded quite quickly as interest grew. Now fundraising to make it a physical space where people can enjoy Black visual culture.
The Archives for Black Lesbians to build Community, Educate & Preserve our Culture.
An online archive of the feminist movement in Poland.
The Ottawa Women’s Archives collection contains archival fonds and collections related to the history of women in Canada, with particular emphasis on the feminist movement since the 1960s, material which continues to grow. Based in the University of Ottawa Archives & Special Collections.
Women’s centre and a library, in Pisa. Collection of almost 100 Italian magazines and 6,000 volumes of non-fiction literature.
The International House of Women is an autonomous body responsible for enhancing women’s policy, offering services and advice, and includes a restaurant, an organizational secretariat, a guest house, a convention center, and, of course, a library & archive.
Inspired by Shirley Chisholm, it is a collection of materials on women’s activism in Brooklyn since 1945 until the present. Physical collections can be found at the Brooklyn College Archives & Special Collections.
Feminism In India is an award-winning digital intersectional feminist media organisation to learn, educate and develop a feminist sensibility among the youth. It is required to unravel the F-word and demystify the negativity surrounding it. FII amplifies the voices of women and marginalised communities using tools of art, media, culture, technology and community.
The women’s peace camps at Greenham Common nuclear base is history now; but their methods of non-violent direct action and the weapons they protested against are not. A generation later women are still protesting at military bases.
Based at Barnard Center for Research on Women, it offers a snapshot of feminist history in the 1960s and 1970s, the institutionalization of women’s centers and women’s studies as an academic discipline, and feminist struggles taking place at colleges and universities, in healthcare and social service centers, in political organizations and neighborhood meetings across the US.
Germany’s Digital Women’s Archive – Digitales Deutsches Frauenarchiv – is a specialist digital archive on the history of the German women’s movement.
The EGP project is part of a national initiative to retrieve the papers of individuals whose life work has had a lasting impact on the course of American history. Since 1980, the EGP project has collected, organized, and edited tens of thousands of documents from around the world by and about Emma Goldman (1869-1940), a leading figure in American anarchism, feminism, and radicalism.
Queer café and feminist library in Armenia. Recently set up. They have contacted us with request for solidarity donations of money and books to keep them going. The political environment they’re operating in is quite hostile. So they’d be grateful for any expressions of solidarity.
The Feminist Memory Project, run from the Nepal Picture Library, is working to create a large repository of materials about Nepali women’s struggles and achievements. Through the project, they expect to broaden NPL’s goals of enabling more inclusive versions of Nepali history as well as generating critical conversations about visual culture.
Ivana Armanini is a comic artist and illustrator but her website also includes a substantial library of books, zines, comics and other such contributions.
Feminist library, Mexico
New project, in Chiapas, Mexico. Working with both academics and indigenous women activists to create a truly intersectional resource on and for feminists. Still awaiting website.
Feminist publisher, bookshop and foundation in Warsaw, Poland, fighting to end discrimination against women.
A new feminist library in Kathmandu centring women’s writing and writing on women.
F.L.O.W. is a free mobile lending library of donated books, founded in July 2014. Their mission is to celebrate and promote feminist works, and move them among communities to center marginalized voices and experiences. F.L.O.W. joyfully empowers people to find tools for liberation, making feminism accessible to all.
An archive and a library, with a mission to promote the studies of women’s culture, and women’s social and political experience, with specific attention to women’s historical associations and feminism. Includes a film archive.
An online resource archive for second wave feminist texts written between 1965-1995.
The Bonn Women’s Museum was founded in 1981 by Marianne Pitzen and an interdisciplinary group of working women, and claims to be the first museum of its kind in the world. It hosts temporary exhibitions and accompanying events, and is run by the “Women’s Museum – Art, Culture, Research” society.
The Hittisau Women’s Museum is the first and only women’s museum in Austria. It is also the only one in the world in rural areas. It was founded in 2000 and has since shown more than thirty exhibitions on topics relevant to women. The Museum has made it its mission to make the cultural creation of women and women’s history visible, and to document them. It presents two exhibitions per year, which deal with women-relevant topics in the fields of social and cultural history, art, architecture, history.
The Women’s Museum in Merano’s permanent exhibition focuses on the cultural and everyday history from a female perspective and the representation of women’s ideals and role models from the 19th century to the present day, through dresses, accessories, everyday objects, books and documents. They also host temporary exhibitions, as well as publishing.
Friedman Feminist Press Collection was established in 2013 to encourage students and scholars to read and study books published by feminist presses that were integral to the development of feminist movement but may no longer be in print.
The first ever queer history and culture museum in Poland (online).
First worldwide repository for gender studies and gender research.
It is the first museum in the world dedicated to girlhood. A virtual museum for exhibitions, education, and raising awareness about girls and girlhood globally, as well as an information platform for social/cultural dialogue and investigation. They research and collect cross-cultural historic and contemporary images and stories from and about girlhood around the world. Through exhibitions, publications, and projects, they explore and document the unique experience of being born and growing up female.
Founded in 1985, the GLBT Historical Society is recognized internationally as a leader in the field of LGBTQ public history. Their operations are centered around two sites: the GLBT Historical Society Museum, located since 2011 in the heart of San Francisco’s Castro neighborhood; and the Dr. John P. De Cecco Archives and Research Center, open to researchers in the Mid-Market district.
HFI hosts the first, the largest and the only feminist archive and library collection in Israel. Their mission is to collect and document the history of feminist activism in Israel from 1970 to the present, to make women’s social and political contribution visible and to inspire future generations. Founded in 2007, the archive hosts thousands of documents in 147 collections, including a wide variety of materials: personal and organizational archives of Israeli women’s groups and organizations, conference papers, dissertations, books, oral histories, media excerpts and feminist journals, as well as a visual collection comprised of leaflets, photographs, video and audio tapes, posters and unique artistic materials.
Online archive of feminist groups and collectives in Rome and Lazio from the 70s until today.
Its aim is to encourage and coordinate research in all aspects of women’s history at international level, by promoting exchange of information and publication and by arranging and assisting in arranging large-scale international conferences as well as more restricted and specialized meetings.
The International Museum of Women, headquartered in San Francisco, California, is an online museum that covers women’s issues worldwide. Since March 2014 it has been part of the Global Fund for Women.
A national organization dedicated to collecting and promoting the extraordinary stories of Jewish women. JWA explores the past as a framework for understanding the issues important to women today; inspires young people with remarkable role models; and uses Jewish women’s stories to excite people to see themselves as agents of change. Their website is the world’s largest collection of information on Jewish women.
Danish centre for study of issues relating to gender, equality and diversity, recently merged with the Royal Library.
The Lesbian Herstory Archives is home to the world’s largest collection of materials by and about lesbians and their communities. It’s located in Brooklyn.
The Leslie-Lohman Museum is a dynamic and safe space where the LGBTQ community and its allies engage in meaningful and authentic art experiences that foster empowerment and community building. Includes collections of images, archives, objects and library collections.
The best database of Italian women’s libraries and archives.
A digital archive of feminist activism from the 1970s to the 1990s in Canada. Initially, in 2014, it was intended to be a digital archive of three Toronto-based feminist publications from our personal history and collections: Cayenne, Rebel Girls’ Rag and the International Women’s Day Committee (IWDC) Newsletter. However, the project rapidly grew into something much more ambitious, inviting others to share their collections and stories.
Since 1978 the RoSa library and centre of expertise is the place to be for information and documentation on women’s issues, feminism and gender.
The Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America documents the lives of women of the past and present for the future and furthers the Radcliffe Institute’s commitment to women, gender, and society.
The gay museum in Berlin was first set up as a one-off exhibition in 1984, and the first exhibition in the Schwules Museum opened in 1986. It includes library & archival collections, as well as events & exhibitions.
She Said Books is a bookshop for female and queer authors on Kottbusser Damm 79, Berlin.
Have safe space dedicated exclusively to Black feminism, Black feminist theory, and Womanism — with material that encompasses direct and very strong elements of these.
Currently fundraising for a home for what has so far been a pop-up library in Mumbai, India.
STICHWORT is a political project of the autonomous women’s and lesbians’ movements in Vienna.
The SNMA is one of the largest gay archives and libraries in the United States, founded in 1972. It presents an ongoing 12-month schedule of exhibitions on LGBTQ themes and public programs, including author presentations, films, panel discussions, and collaborative events at its museum and library in South Florida and in cities across the United States.
Tee A. Corinne (1943-2006) was a photographer, artist, writer, and lesbian activist. The collection includes correspondence, literary manuscripts, artwork, photographs, artifacts, and other documents that reflect Corinne’s life and work (1966-2003 (inclusive)). *A substantial group of additional materials was donated at Corinne’s death, in August of 2006, and is now being processed.*
Established in order to preserve and provide access to important material documenting the history of women’s movement groups in Victoria, Canada. It includes original records such as minutes, correspondence, reports, newsletters, diaries, logs, photographs and audio-visual material. Based at University of Victoria Libraries’ archives.
A European network of libraries, archives, information centres and web portals specialising in gender, feminist and women’s research.
Or Centro Documentazione Donna, Ferrara – one of the longest-established Italian women’s centres. Its main activity is the management of a library and a general newspaper library. Also home to a feminist choir.
A collection of over 25,000 books and pamphlets: everything from popular fiction by women through to specialist non-fiction covering issues from health, sexuality and popular culture to politics, history and human rights.
The first and only women-centred library and archive in Istanbul, Turkey. It was opened to the public in 1990. The collections of the Women’s Library in Istanbul are organised in sixteen main sections: Women’s Private Papers, Women’s Oral History, Women’s Organizations, Ephemera, Women Writers, Women Artists, Visual Documents, Audio Material, Posters, Art Collections, Newspaper Clippings, Books, Periodicals, Rare Material, Thesis-Dissertations and Articles.
A history museum dedicated to the cultural history of women in Denmark, housed in the former city hall and police station in Aarhus, from 1857.
The raison d’etre of Women’s Museum Istanbul is to create a place to honour and inform, in order to keep the history of women up to date and to make a contribution to women’s memory. The permanent exhibition focuses on the biographies of women who have broken new ground in the artistic and cultural life of Istanbul. Temporary exhibitions in Women’s Museum Istanbul could cover any subject that is a part of Istanbul’s women’s memory.