On Thursday 17th November, in the Broadway Cinema Mezzanine Bar, Trans Lives: East Mids, a research cluster within the Gendered Lives Research Group, held its first event for the trans communities in the East Midlands.
After an introduction by Catherine Armstrong, who is leading the research project, we welcomed Paris Lees, a leading trans journalist and activist, who talked about growing up in Nottingham, giving an insight into her childhood and teen years in the area. Lees also addressed the areas that she sees as the most important facing the trans community today, including the treatment of teens and the need to combat continuing discrimination. She also talked about her exciting autobiography, due out next year, which she described as employing six different voices in order to recount her past, including its more traumatic elements.
The event was publicised through various trans and LGBTQI groups in the East Midlands, and attracted a wide audience of approximately 40 people. The atmosphere was fantastic: welcoming, warm, and friendly, and the audience clearly enjoyed what Lees had to say, as was evident in the lengthy and engaged questions which followed her talk.
Trans Lives: East Mids is an oral history project for the trans community in the East Midlands. The next phase of the project is to move into consultation with members of the trans community who signed up on the night to be involved. We are seeking collaboration in designing the project, so that the archive can be useful to the trans community, as well as participants who would be prepared to share their stories. Trans Lives: East Mids has an advisory committee of trans and LGBTQI people, both academics and non-academics.
If you think you might like to be involved in any way, do please get in touch with Catherine Armstrong or Jennifer Cooke. You can use the email on these pages or contact us directly.