Welcome to CamQueerHistory! We're a group of undergrads, grads and staff at the University of Cambridge putting on a series of events for LGBTQ+ History Month 2019. We'd like to thank CUSU, CUSU LGBT+, Pembroke College Graduate Parlour, Selwyn College MCR and LGBTQ+@cam for their support in funding our events. See our event calendar below for what is organised so far, and watch this space for lots more in the near future :) (events organised by other groups in grey)

Queer historical poesy labJanuary Tuesday 22nd 7pm 2019
Bateman room, Gonville & Caius College, Trinity Street
We are interested in the intersections of queerness, history and poetry. This semi-regular ‘lab’ will be both workshop for poetry on queer historical themes and reading group for discussing queerness in (literary) history and how poetry can function to illuminate this. Bring pieces to work on or discuss, or simply come to listen and get involved in the discussion of others’ contributions.

An Introduction to Queer HistoryFebruary Friday 1st 5pm 2019
Andrew LumsdenMill Lane Lecture Theatres room 7
Delivered by original Gay Liberation Front (GLF) Activist and co-founder of Gay News Andrew Lumsden, this talk begins just prior to the Labouchere Amendment of 1885 and works forward to the modern day. The talk will stop off at significant moments in Queer History in this time period, with emphasis on the Labouchere Amendment and on the activities of the GLF in the early 1970’s. The talk will end by looking at the modern context, and will allow ample room for questions to be answered by the speaker.

“Nothing Ever Just Disappears”: innovative queer writing in America in the 1980sFebruary Monday 4th 6pm 2019
Dr Diarmuid Hester, University of CambridgeHoward Building, Downing College
The subject of this talk is New Narrative, a vibrant but now little-known queer literary movement which was bubbling under the surface of America during the 1980s. Sexy, formally innovative, and politically-charged, New Narrative stories and novels gave voice to individual experience, while at the same time trying to strengthen relationships in LGBTQ communities at the height of the AIDS crisis. This talk explores some examples of these radical, experimental tales of the city and argues for their influence on contemporary American fiction.

Some short texts will be circulated beforehand.

Bio: Diarmuid Hester is a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in English at the University of Cambridge and a College Research Associate of Emmanuel College. His work is broadly concerned with radical politics and post-war American culture. Current projects include Wrong: A Critical Biography of Dennis Cooper (forthcoming, University of Iowa Press) and a counterhistory of New York art and culture from the vantage point of waste.

Sisterhood, sawdust and squattingFebruary Thursday 7th 5pm 2019
Chris Wall (University of Westminster)Chadwick room, Selwyn College, Cambridge
This talk uses personal testimonies from an oral history project aiming to record the memories of lesbian women who squatted and created a community of over a hundred women in Hackney throughout the 1970s and 1980s. As part of the wider London squatting movement, by the mid-70s estimated at over 30,000 people, the squats were all located in vacant, substandard housing owned by local authorities and earmarked either for demolition or rehabilitation. Repaired and restored by women the squats provided unusual access to housing and the freedom to set up radical experiments in collective living and alternative urban communities. For young lesbians it was an opportunity for self-determination, to live autonomously, and to imagine and create a different world. This talk reveals how this new community, which appeared in the historic houses around London Fields, engaged directly with the built environment, interacted with the local neighbourhood and statutory bodies, while at the same time being embedded within, and contributing to, the wider women's liberation movement in London.

Bio:Christine Wall is Reader in Architectural and Construction History, University of Westminster, Co-Editor of The Construction History Journal, editor of The Oral History Journal, and member of the Oral History Society LGBTQ Special Interest Group.

(This talk is rescheduled from last year when it was cancelled due to the strike)

History of BisexualityFebruary Wednesday 13th 5pm 2019
Martha Robinson Rhodes, University of BirminghamChadwick room, Selwyn College
History of bisexuality and multiple gender attraction in Britain during the 1970s and 1980s.

Seen but not heard: Lesbian identities in New ZealandFebruary Friday 22nd 6pm 2019
Evan Hazenberg (University of Sussex)Bateman room, Gonville & Caius College, Trinity Street
New Zealand decriminalised homosexuality in 1986, which was followed by a substantial and relatively swift change in social attitudes over the next couple of decades. Using sociolinguistic data from queer and straight New Zealanders, some of whom came of age before law reform and some after, this talk examines some of the sociophonetic correlates of lesbian identities in New Zealand against two very different social backdrops.

Film screening: A Fantastic Woman February Wednesday 27th 5pm 2019
Liz Harvey-Kattou, University of WestminsterBateman Auditorium, Gonville & Caius College, Trinity Street
This powerful, personal and intimate drama tells the story of Marina and how she deals with the death of her older boyfriend. The film deals with transphobia and grief, but remains both very individual and hopeful. Dr Liz Harvey-Kattou (University of Westminster) will give a talk on identity in Spanish-language cinema to introduce the film.