As we head into February, we’re very pleased to announce our programme of events for our LGBT+ History Month, on the day we have been rated one of the top 100 employers in Stonewall’s Workplace index.
This is an important part of our University calendar as we celebrate and commemorate the work and research of our LGBT+ community and look at how we can continue to support LGBT+ staff and students. It is wonderful to be able to announce our plans for the month on the day when we have been placed at 44 in Stonewall’s top 100 employers list, a jump of more than 200 places, which just serves to highlight the fantastic work which has taken place across the University.
Alongside the events that the Students’ Union are holding for Pride Week, including yesterday’s Pride Walk and Fair and the sports teams support through their rainbow laces campaign, we are holding a whole host of events throughout February. Find out more below.
Get to know your LGBT+ Flags – All month
The University Library’s brand new Digital Reading Room, which is due to open on Monday 5 February boasts an eight foot by six foot interactive wall. Presented here is a small selection of the many LGBT+ Flags showcasing their design and their history. Come and take a look, interact and learn something new!
Art History and Queerness
Monday 12 February, 4pm: Attenborough Arts Centre
A lecture detailing contributions to fine art by some notable and lesser-known gay, lesbian and transgender people. This will also cover changing themes in queer art from pre-legalisation, through the culture wars of 20th century and up to the present. Finishing with a long view of the issues surrounding the definitions of “queer” and its application in the arts.
Bi Pride UK: a new movement for the bi community
Tuesday 13 February, 4.30pm: Attenborough Arts Centre, Lancaster Rd, Leicester LE1 7HABi Pride UK is a new organisation working to create new high-profile spaces for anyone who experiences attraction to more than one gender to celebrate their identities. Through engaging with and educating local Pride organisations across the country and creating our own dedicated annual Bi Pride event (with the first in March 2019), we address the existing exclusion often experienced by bi people in the UK in traditional Pride spaces. They’ll be giving a brief introduction to bi identities and the bi community in the UK, and you’ll get to hear more about what the Bi Pride UK team has been up to since founding the organisation in 2017, learn about the organisation’s plans, and see how you could get involved.
For the Love of Gaming Social
14 February, 7pm: Firebug, 1 Millstone Ln, Leicester LE1 5JNSpend this Valentine’s evening chilling out at the Firebug for some friendly competitive fun with board games and retro video gaming.
Queer Quiz Night
21 February, 7pm: Firebug, 1 Millstone Ln, Leicester LE1 5JNOn Tuesday 21 February, as part of the LGBT+ History Month celebrations, students and staff will be going head-to-head at the Queer Quiz Night, taking place at Firebug. All students and staff are welcome to attend this free event, and should brush up on their knowledge of all things LGBT+ if they want to win the grand prize! The quiz topics will cover pop culture, politics, history and current events, so start reading now. Quiz starts at 7pm, in the upstairs room in Firebug. Free entry.
Queer Comics with Esther De Dauw, Selina Lock and Grant Denkinson
Thursday 22nd February, 10am–12noon: Charles Wilson Second Floor LT Belvoir City Lounge
Join academics and staff in discussion about LGBT+ representation in graphic novels on Thursday 22 February. Dr Esther de Dauw will be talking about the history of gay characters in comic books, while Selina Lock and Grant Denkinson will be discussing the impact of comic books on their identity, as well as sharing their hot tips and recommendations.
Disability and LGBT+ Intersectionality Workshop
23 February, 1–3pm: Charles Wilson Building, 4th Floor Garendon RoomFree training workshop organised by the University’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion team, delivered by the Leicestershire Centre for Integrated Living.
An Evening with David Hoyle
Friday 23 February, 7pm: Centre for Medicine Building, Lecture Theatre 2, 15 Lancaster Rd, Leicester LE1 7HAJoin us for a very special performance by the sensational anti-drag queen, David Hoyle, followed by a Q & A. Hoyle came to prominence in the 1990s as the Divine David. He appeared in several late night Channel 4 shows and later in Chris Morris's Nathan Barley but now performs live under his own name. He is closely associated with the Royal Vauxhall Tavern but has also performed at the Soho Theatre, Chelsea Theatre, Battersea Arts Centre, National Portrait Gallery, Tate Britain and Victoria & Albert Museum. Expect biting satire, bravura costumes and high comedy. “There is nothing quite like it: bold and unique, electrifying and disarmingly humane” - Time Out. Sponsored by the College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities. Book your place here.
Writing Purple Prose: Bisexuality in Britain
Monday 26 February, 11am–12noon: Leicester LGBT Centre, 15 Wellington St, Leicester LE1 6HH
Kate Harrad, bisexual activist and writer and the editor of recently published book Purple Prose, reads extracts from the book and discusses the issues around publishing a book on bisexuality. Topics covered by the book include definitions, dating, how to be a bi ally, and the identities that intersect with bisexuality. This is an informal session with discussion encouraged. Copies of Purple Prose will be available to buy.
Monday 26 February, 1–2pm: Charles Wilson Second Floor LT Belvoir City LoungeBeing able to see ourselves reflected in the culture around us can be a source of comfort and self-confidence. It makes us feel accepted, valued, normal. Yet, the representation of bisexual people in popular culture has historically been lacking, and bi representation continues to be plagued by terrible tropes and stereotypes... This session will explore the good, the bad, and the ugly of bisexual representation in popular culture and look at the empowering potential of varied and nuanced bisexual characters. Milena Popova has recently completed their PhD in Digital Cultures at the Digital Cultures Research Centre, UWE Bristol. They are a freelance writer, researcher and activist, and have authored blog posts, book chapters, and academic papers on a range of bisexual issues.
Trans+ Slumber Party: screening of Laurence Anyways
26February, 7pm: Leicester LGBT Centre, 15 Wellington St, Leicester LE1 6HHDon your comfy clothes, bring your popcorn and snacks and settle in for a laid back screening and conversation on Laurence Anyways. The 2012 romantic drama written, edited and directed by Xavier Dolan and winner of the Queer Palm Award at 2012 Cannes Film Festival explores an impossible love story spanning across a decade, chronicling the doomed love of Fred and Laurence, as well as the trials and tribulations that they face.
LGBT Staff Social Lunch
27 February, 12noon–2pm: Charles Wilson Second Floor LT Belvoir City LoungeOn Tuesday 27 February, the University of Leicester invites of our LGBT+ staff to a social lunch in Charles Wilson Building, where you can get to know your fellow queer peers. There’ll be a free buffet provided, as well as drinks and a chance for attendees to speak to the group should they wish. The event will run from 12-2pm in the Belvoir City Lounge, on the 2nd floor of the Charles Wilson Building.
Sex, Politics and Contemporary Queer Cinema + Screening of Blue is the Warmest Color
Wednesday 28 February, 6pm: Attenborough Film Theatre (Attenborough tower basement)
This critical introduction to Blue is the Warmest Colour will delineate the relationship between contemporary queer cinema and the politics of representing explicit sex on-screen. The talk will also discuss the controversies Blue is the Warmest Color faced (and still does face), and why the male gaze debate is still so pertinent to the analysis of lesbian sex in cinema. Book your place here.
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