34 Photographs of Women in Punk From Between the Late 1970s and Early 1990s

These rarely seen, personal photographs, taken from Sam Knee’s forthcoming book, Untypical Girls: Styles and Sounds of the Transatlantic Indie Revolution, chart the rise of women in alternative music.

From the advent of punk in late-70s Britain to grunge via no wave, indie, and hardcore, Untypical Girls traces the evolution of indie girl styles, and, more important, the transformation and explosion of voices long suppressed in the music industry.

As Knee writes in the introduction, “This book is by no means an indie girl A-Z. Merely a glimpse into a journey from nascent radical stages to the full flower of revolution, the looks and attitudes of which are frighteningly relevant today.”

Punk girls with Belinda Carlisle from the Go-Go’s in the center. Los Angeles, 1978.
Kim Gordon. Somewhere in Connecticut, 1987.
Poly Styrene from the X-Ray Spex at the Red Cow. London, 1977
Gee Vaucher of CRASS at Eric’s Club. Liverpool, England, 1979.
Hu¨sker Du¨ fan. Somewhere in New Jersey, 1984.
Slant 6 at the Embassy. Washington, DC, 1992.
The band Dolly Mixture. Doncaster, England, 1981.
Riot girls at the March for Women’s Lives. Washington, DC, 1992.
Stef Petticoat of post- punk band the Petticoats. London, 1980.
Two post-punk fans pose. Wimbledon, London, 1980.
Clare Kearney and Liz Gutekunst of the Cancer Girls. Washington, DC, 1979.
Riot grrrls performing. Washington, DC, 1992.
Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth at Maxwell’s. Hoboken, New Jersey, 1984.
Neo Boys, likely Portland’s 1st all-girl punk group. Portland, Oregon, 1981.
Dancing to the Big Boys. Houston, 1980.
Gillian Elam of Bi-Joopiter, 1989.
Ari Up of the Slits, 1979.
Bikini Kill, 1993.
Bodysnatchers, 1980.
Skinned Teen, 1983.
Strawberry Switchblade, 1982.
Lunachicks, 1989.
Two women during the Revolution Summer in Washington DC, 1985 – an upswell of activism against the violence and sexism in the US punk scene
Julia Gorton, 1979.
Modettes, 1980.
Altered Images, 1981.
Jane Fox, 1981.
Rachel and Gaye Bell – The Twinsets, 1981.
GUN CLUB, 1981.
Bilinda MBV, 1988.
Julie Cafritz with Pussy Galore, 1988.
Jan Aberdeen, 1981.
Sonic Youth, 1987.
Courtney Love, 1991.

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