It was with great delight that we hauled 48 copies of Our Past Matters to the University of Calgary bookstore recently. It has been selected as course reading material in the upcoming Spring term (May-June 2019). The class offered through the Department of Women’s Studies is called LGBTQ+ Social Change History: From Stonewall to Calgary and is taught by Joe Kadi.
A grad-student annotated copy of Our Past Matters.
Our Past Matters was intentionally written to be accessible – eschewing academic publishing standards and tone. However, the Calgary Gay History Project is excited that the academy has found a place for it. Local queer history should be digested and discussed in our post-secondary institutions! University students were essential players in Calgary’s queer history from 1970 onwards.
It is poetic to think that students taking this class are linking themselves to previous generations – on the same campus – through their interest in social change history.
I packed up my office at the New Central Library this weekend as my historian residency came to an end. It was both wonderful and an honour. Look for an upcoming queer history exhibition at the Library in May. Also, I am in conversation with Library staff about creating an ongoing series of “Tea with the Historian” gatherings – stay tuned.
Saying goodbye to the Historian in Residence office.
Bow Valley College is celebrating its first ever Pride Week, February 11-15, 2019. They have a full slate of activities and workshops planned. You are welcome to join me for our queer local history lecture this Wednesday at noon.
BVC’s Pride Week 2019
Then on Thursday evening at 7 PM, please brave the weather for a heartwarming reading of Our Past Matters at Parkside Love (Shelf Life Books – 1302 4th St SW). Not only will we be sharing memories of the former gay bar which existed there, but we also will present a surprising Parkside artifact that will be sure to delight. Light refreshments will be served.
Join us at Shelf Life Books on Thursday, February 14th, from 7-9 PM for an exciting event with Kevin Allen as he reads from his new book, Our Past Matters: Stories of Gay Calgary.
Kevin Allen’s Our Past Matters: Stories of Gay Calgary walks the reader through the back alleys and underground gathering spaces of the city’s early gay community. Meet the characters, martyrs, and heroes who helped forge the LGBTQ2 human rights we have today. This entertaining and authoritative account of a Calgary few know is a major addition to the many-hued and complex tales of the city. He reveals: “We were here, and we always have been.”
Shelf Life Books resides at the same address as former gay bar Parkside Continental, which operated from 1973-1986. At the reading, former patrons and staff of the Parkside will be invited to share their memories of this much-loved gathering place.
If you are unable to attend but would like to share a memory to be read: email Kevin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Share the love of history!