A big thank you to all of the Calgary Gay History Project readers who filled out our survey for queer history offerings at Calgary Pride this year (August 26 – September 5). Here is where you will find us:
Saturday, August 27, 2 PM
Join Shelf Life Books and Kevin Allen for a talk about his book Our Past Matters: Stories of Gay Calgary. The talk will be followed by an open mic, where audience members can share their stories of Gay Calgary or read poems or prose pieces (with a 6-8 minute time slot limit). If you identify as a part of the 2SLGBTQ+ community and would like to participate, then please let us know at email@example.com! You can also sign up before the event, space permitted. Registration for audience attendance is recommended and appreciated! Free event.
Saturday, August 27, 4 PM
The Calgary Gay History Project’s Kevin Allen will lead a gay history walk through the Beltline. Learn about the City’s fascinating LGBTQ2 past. The walk begins at 4:00 PM in Central Memorial Park (meet at the Boer War Memorial in the centre of the park) and ends at 5:30 PM at Lois Szabo Commons, a new city park celebrating LGBTQ2 history. Spaces are limited; please register in advance through Calgary Pride. Free event.
Friday, September 2, 7 PM
Our friends at The Calgary Institute for the Humanities presents the 4th Annual LGTBQ2S+ Lecture, featuring Dr. Jules Gill-Peterson. Titled: Trans Panic: A Global History, Dr. Gill-Peterson explores the history of violence against trans women. Where did it come from? And when did it arise? Letting go of a purely psychological lens, history shows that targeting trans femininity has been integral to colonial statecraft around the world for the past 150 years. On Zoom or in person at the Central Library. Reserve your spot: here. Free event.
Sunday, September 4, Noon
Our History Booth at the Calgary Pride Festival—Immediately following the Pride Parade on September 4, join us at Pride’s new festival venue – Fort Calgary. At our table there will be history artifacts, books, and ephemera as well as Project volunteers to answer questions and have conversations about Calgary’s Queer History. Sponsored by Calgary Pride. Free event. Stop by and say, “hi!” Happy Pride!
Our Past Mattershas had another stellar year. It is now a textbook in two University of Calgary courses—one in Social Work, the other in Gender & Sexuality Studies—despite not being an academic read! The Our Past Mattersebook also had a short run as an Amazon #1 Best Seller in its category.
Readers note: this is our last post for the calendar year. Thank you for your ongoing support and enthusiasm for local queer history. Consider these books as our good read recommendations for this holiday season. If you enjoy them, leave reviews on sites such as GoodReads and Amazon for other readers to discover.
“Our history is about the stories, lives, experiences, and thoughts of individuals who built their lives around their newfound and often hard-won identity. We cannot lose that”. Stephen Lock wrote those words in the October 1994 issue of Clue!, one of Calgary’s queer publications at the time. In 2018, LGBTQ+ historian Kevin Allen released Our Past Matters: Stories of Gay Calgary, noting that the project was “ultimately about memory, and recording these essential stories of our humanity.” In this talk I follow the lead of Lock and Allen, by using archival and interview materials to explore the place of sport in Calgary’s LGBTQ+ history, from the 1970s through to the early 2000s. From softball to volleyball, running to swimming, Apollo Friends in Sport, and the Gay Games, the retelling of these stories on their own and in conversation with one another, reveal that sport played a necessary but sometimes complicated role in individual empowerment, community-building, and the Pride movement.
Dr. William Bridel is Associate Professor and Associate Dean (Academic) in the Faculty of Kinesiology at the University of Calgary. He specializes in sociocultural aspects of sport, physical activity, and the body. Current projects include investigations of LGBTQI2S+ inclusion in sport, as well as inclusion and safe sport policy. He is also interested in sport-related pain and injury, with a recent focus on athletes’ experiences of sport-related concussion.
This event will be simultaneously hosted in a live venue (University of Calgary, Taylor Institute Forum) and online on Zoom. All registrants will receive event details one week before the event and may decide to attend in either setting.
In-person attendees are required to follow all UCalgary COVID-19 event requirements: see event for details.