Working class homosexuality in South African history

HSRC seminar and book launch

Date: 11 AUGUST 2020                      
Time: 13H00 –15H00

LIVESTREAM VIA ZOOM
Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/92168576841?pwd=T3NycWtvSXZFUGtaMG5YaXA4Qk9lQT09
 
Speakers:          
Dr Iain Edwards  
Prof. Marc Epprecht, (Department of Global Development Studies at Queen’s University, Canada)   
Prof. Heidi van Rooyen (Impact Centre, Human Sciences Research Council)

Chair:                 
Prof. Monique Marks (Urban Futures Centre at the Durban University of Technology)

Working Class Homosexuality in South African History provides the first scholarly outline for the development of a narrative of same-sex working class African men. The book’s core analytic thrust centres around a previously unpublished primary source from the early twentieth century as well as unique oral history interviews with men remembering their lives in the gay settlement of Mkhumbane. While South Africa’s Bill of Rights provides constitutional protection for the right of any person to choose her or his own sexual preferences, this has not prevented violent and even murderous assaults on members of the growing and increasingly vocal LGBTI community. Given the dearth of published works on South Africa’s gay communities and reasoned public discussion as well as the recent controversy over the film Inxeba, there is considerable urgency in confronting entrenched bigotry, prejudice, and homophobia. Working Class Homosexuality in South African History inspires South Africa’s to reimagine an inclusive sense of the past as well as the future.

About the authors

Iain Edwards is an independent historian with scholarly interests in oral history and historiography and historical methods, particularly concerning life histories and public heritage and history. In the early 1990s, he led the successful public campaign establishing the Kwa Muhle Museum in Durban; served as the historical expert on legal teams successfully representing previous African and Indian residents of Cato Manor Farm in Land Claims Court cases; and, as a government special advisor, was involved in the early stages of developing the history narrative for the Freedom Park Heritage and Museum site.

Marc Epprecht is a professor in the Department of Global Development Studies at Queen’s University, where he teaches courses on culture and development, HIV/AIDS, and southern Africa. He has published extensively on the history of gender and sexuality in Africa, primarily in Lesotho, Zimbabwe and South Africa. His research engages with human rights questions and the ethics of research, activism, and knowledge production in Africa and the Global South more generally. He was a contributor and associate editor for the African contributors to H. Chiang (ed.) Global Encyclopedia of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTQ) history.

Book available here: https://www.hsrcpress.ac.za/books/working-class-homosexualityin-south-african-history-2

Kindly RSVP by 10 August 2020

For further information contact: Arlene Grossberg | E: acgrossberg@hsrc.ac.za

The HSRC seminar series is funded by the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI). The views and opinions expressed therein as well as findings and statements of the seminar series do not necessarily represent the views of the DSI. Please also note that this seminar may be recorded and published on the HSRC podcast channel.

Please contact Arlene Grossberg (acgrossberg@hsrc.ac.za) to unsubscribe.

Zoom link: https://zoom.us/j/92168576841?pwd=T3NycWtvSXZFUGtaMG5YaXA4Qk9lQT09