Celebrating our 30th Anniversary

SPRING 2022 EVENTS:

REFUGE, ASYLUM, DETENTION: A FEMINIST AND QUEER LENS
EVENT RECORDING
February 3, 2022

84 million people and counting have been forcibly displaced by war and violence worldwide. The majority are stranded with insecure legal status in refugee camps and urban peripheries in the global South. Those who seek refuge in the U.S., Europe, or Australia face ongoing violence and rights violations, including incarceration in camps and detention centers. Others are granted temporary protection that turns refuge into decades-long protracted insecurity.

In this discussion, we use feminist and queer lenses to analyze these movements and containments. We explore how gender and sexuality shape refuge, asylum, and detention; how feminist and queer standpoints illuminate the structures that produce and sustain global apartheid; and how refugees and their allies resist these forces.

This event is co-sponsored by the Cornell Migrations Initiative.

RADICAL DESIRE: MAKING ON OUR BACKS MAGAZINE
February 14-September 30, 2022
Hirshland Exhibition Gallery, Carl A. Kroch Library

On Our Backs magazine launched in San Francisco in 1984 promising, per the tagline on the cover, “entertainment for the adventurous lesbian.” The photographic images on the cover and throughout were central to its mandate to deliver sexual content for lesbians. The photography also created the greatest difficulties for the magazine’s circulation at a moment when many feminist leaders decried pornographic photographs and film as a form of violence against women. This exhibition presents original photographs created for On Our Backs during its first decade. Made by staffers and freelancers, professionals and amateurs, members of the magazine’s inner circle and its far-flung readership, they convey the fantasies, imagination, humor, rigor, radicalism, political engagement, and ethos of community-building and inclusion that defined On Our Backs and made it a touchstone in the queer press. Additional photographs and documents elucidate the political and erotic contexts into which the magazine emerged, the women behind it, and their business practices and strategies. All materials are drawn from Cornell Library’s Human Sexuality Collection.

Exhibition curators: Kate Addleman-Frankel, Gary and Ellen Davis Curator of Photography, Johnson Museum of Art, and Brenda Marston, Curator of the Human Sexuality Collection, Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections.

Online exhibition coming in March!

ABOUT MAKING GAY HISTORY: A LECTURE BY ERIC MARCUS
March 2, 2022
9:40am-10:55AM, EST

The lecture will be given in the Introduction to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Studies course in the College of Arts and Sciences at Cornell University. Eric will addresses the absence of substantive, in-depth LGBTQ-inclusive American history from the public discourse and the classroom by providing a window into that history through the stories of the people who helped a despised minority take its rightful place in society as full and equal citizens. 
In so doing, we aim to encourage connection, pride, and solidarity within the LGBTQ community and to provide an entry point for both allies and the general public to its largely hidden history.

Eric Marcus is executive director of Making Gay History and founder and host of the Making Gay History podcast. He is the author of a dozen books, including two editions of Making Gay History (the original 1992 edition is entitled Making History), Why Suicide?, and Breaking the Surface, the #1 New York Times bestselling autobiography of Olympic diving champion Greg Louganis. Eric is also the co-producer of Those Who Were There, a podcast drawn from the Fortunoff Video Archive for Holocaust Testimonies. And he is the founder and chair of the Stonewall 50 Consortium. Learn more about Eric in this NBC News profile.

CHATS IN THE STACKS: THE QUEERNESS OF HOME WITH STEPHEN VIDER
More information will be forthcoming. 

THREADS: SUSTAINING INDIA'S TEXTILE TRADITION
April 13, 2022 at 4:45pm
Willard Straight Theatre, Central Campus

w/post-screening discussion with Denise Green (Director, Cornell Fashion & Textile Collection) and filmmaker Katherine Sender (Dept of Communication/FGSS)

Directed by Katherine Sender and Shuchi Kothari

Threads: Sustaining India’s Textile Tradition is a documentary film that follows the stories of fashion designers and fabric artisans as they transform traditional textile practices for contemporary fashion markets. After decades of decline in demand for legacy fabrics, these stories demonstrate that committed, collaborative relationships between designers and artisans can innovate traditional practices. We meet Chanderi Master Weaver Bhagwandas who describes how Sanjay Garg (Raw Mango) refined motifs and color in Chanderi weaving. We explore Rahul Mishra’s collaboration with bandhani Master Craftsman Jabbarbhai to innovate tie-dyeing processes in merino wool. We watch Aneeth Arora (Péro) as she works with artisans and craftspeople to modernize traditional silhouettes. And we discover how Rahul and Shikha Mangal (Vrisa) marry handmade with machine-made processes to sustain artisans and appeal to contemporary consumers. The film features interviews with designers in Delhi and Jaipur; hand weavers in Chanderi, 350 miles south of New Delhi; bandhani tie-dyers in Bhuj, in India’s north west; and block printers near Jaipur in Rajasthan. The clothes they produce appeal to an increasingly affluent Indian middle class and global diaspora by using textiles that reference traditional techniques in a contemporary way. Threads argues that sustainability involves more than environmental stewardship and improved economic circumstances for workers: Designers and artisans collaborate in ongoing creative relationships to reinvigorate both traditional textile techniques and the communities who produce them.

In English, Gujarati, Kutchhi, and Hindi.
58 minutes

LIVING QUEER HISTORY: REMEMBRANCE AND BELONGING IN A SOUTHERN CITY, A LECTURE BY SAMANTAH ROSENTHAL
April 21, 2022 at 5:00pm
Goldwin Smith Hall, Kaufman Auditorium (G64)

Queer history is a living practice. Talk to any group of LGBTQ people today, and they will not agree on what story should be told. Many people desire to celebrate the past by erecting plaques and painting rainbow crosswalks, but queer and trans people in the twenty-first century need more than just symbols—they need access to power, justice for marginalized people, spaces of belonging. Approaching the past through a lens of queer and trans survival and world-building transforms history itself into a tool for imagining and realizing a better future.

In her book Living Queer History, Samantha Rosenthal tells the story of an LGBTQ community in Roanoke, Virginia, a small city on the edge of Appalachia. Interweaving historical analysis, theory, and memoir, Rosenthal tells the story of their own journey—coming out and transitioning as a transgender woman—in the midst of working on a community-based history project that documented a multigenerational southern LGBTQ community. Based on over forty interviews with LGBTQ elders, Living Queer History explores how queer people today think about the past and how history lives on in the present.

GRADUATE STUDENT CONVERSATION WITH SAMANTHA ROSENTHAL ABOUT LGBTQ+ PUBLIC HISTORY
April 22, 2022 at 10am
190 Rockefeller Hall

If you’re interested to learn more about Rosenthal’s work, you can access an e-version of their new book through the Cornell library: https://newcatalog.library.cornell.edu/catalog/15166925

RSVP to svider@cornell.edu

GAYLE S. RUBIN LECTURE
Associate Professor, Anthropology and Women's Studies 
More information will be forthcoming. 

Gayle Rubin received her PhD in Anthropology from the University of Michigan in 1994 and has been teaching at the University of Michigan since 2003. She is the author of a series of groundbreaking articles on the politics of sex and gender (collected in Deviations, 2012) and an anthropological study of gay leathermen in San Francisco (entitled Valley of the Kings, forthcoming).   Her teaching includes classes on “Sex Panics,” “Sex and the City,” and graduate seminars such as “Sexological Theories: From Krafft-Ebbing to Foucault” and “The Feminist Sex Wars.”

END OF YEAR ANNIVERSARY AND COMMENCEMENT CELEBRATION
May 12, 2022
4:00pm-6:00pm
A.D. White House

FALL 2021 EVENTS:

FEMINIST THEATER PAST AND PRESENT

THE PERSONAL IS STILL POLITICAL: The Evolution of Feminist Theatre 
EVENT RECORDING
September 30, 2021

The Second Wave Women’s Liberation Movement gave birth to feminist theatre, bringing its rallying cry — “The personal is political” — to the stage. Through content and form, feminist theatre groups built community and claimed space for women’s voices and experiences to be heard.

In this webinar, you’ll get a backstage pass to the history of feminist theatre groups and talk politics, aesthetics, and the future of feminist performance with some of the genre’s iconic artists and scholars. You can find more information including scripts, videos, and suggestions for further reading at www.feministtheatre.com.

This is the first in a three-part panel series, “Feminist Theatre: Past and Present,” that celebrates of the 50th anniversary of Cornell University’s women’s studies program (now Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies) as well as the 30th year of its Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) academic specialty. Each panel will highlight a different moment in feminist and lesbian performance history along with how artists and scholars interpret them.

This series is sponsored by Cornell’s Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (FGSS) and LGBT Studies programs; Cornell’s Department of Performing and Media Arts; James Madison University; CloseToHome Productions; and the Women and Theatre Program of the Association for Theatre in Higher Education.

Panelists: Sue Perlgut, founder of It’s All Right To Be Woman Theatre, Roberta Sklar and Sondra Segal of the Women’s Experimental Theatre, Bobbi Ausubel of Caravan Theatre, Martha Boesing of At the Foot of the Mountain Theatre, and moderated by Dr. Sara Warner, Cornell University.

THEATRE IN THE THIRD WAVE
EVENT RECORDING
October 14, 2021

Discussing feminist and lesbian theater of the 1980s and 90s.
Panelists: Deb Margolin formerly of Split Britches, Carmelita Tropicana solo performer, and Moe Angelos of Five Lesbian Brothers, moderated by Dr. Jill Dolan, Dean of A&S, Princeton University (tentative on Jill).  Sara to give the welcome address.

KABBALAH AND SEX MAGIC
EVENT RECORDING
November 3, 2021

A discussion with Professor Marla Segol on her recently published book "Kabbalah and Sex Magic: a Mythical-Ritual Genealogy" (Penn State University Press, 2021). Professors Jason Sion Mokhtarian (near eastern studies) and Sara Warner (performing and media arts) will serve as interlocutors for the discussion.

Marla Segol is Associate Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Department of Global Gender and Sexuality Studies at the University at Buffalo. She is the author of Word and Image in Medieval Kabbalah: The Texts, Commentaries, and Diagrams of the “Sefer Yetsirah” and coeditor of Sexuality, Sociality, and Cosmology in Medieval Literary Texts.

In this provocative book, Segol explores the development of the kabbalistic cosmology underlying Western sex magic. Drawing extensively on Jewish myth and ritual, Segol tells the powerful story of the relationship between the divine and the human body in late antique Jewish esotericism, in medieval kabbalah, and in New Age ritual practice. Penn State University press

PERFORMANCE IN THE POST-WAVE PRESENT
EVENT RECORDING
November 18, 2021

Discussing contemporary feminist and lesbian theater.
Panelists: Brooke O’Harra Dyke Division of the Theatre of a Two-Headed Calf, Tina Satter  of Half Straddle, and Aladrian C. Wetzel and Christen Cromwell from Two Strikes Theatre Collective, moderated by Dr. Jessica Del Vecchio of James Madison University. Sara to give the welcome address.

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