Brighton LGBTQ+ History Club

Queer in Brighton is a heritage learning project celebrating and promoting the rich cultural life of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community in Brighton & Hove.

Brighton LGBTQ+ History Club

Sunday 27 February 2019 2.30pm – 4.30pm
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery

For our second session of 2019 we are delighted to be welcoming filmmaker and activist Janet Jones. 

Janet is a lesbian researcher living in West Yorkshire. Now in her 50s Janet has been politically active since her teens, in defence of both womens rights and LGBT equalities.

Janet will be presenting her documentary ‘A Lesbian Life: Outing the 70s & 80s’. This is a unique filmed-interview with Amanda Russell, the manager of Gays the Word bookshop in London at the time it was raided by HM Customs who seized imported books that they deemed obscene. This was 1984 and the bookshop Directors were charged with conspiracy.

Prior to the recording of these interviews, full details of the experience of the raid, and the impact of the legislative and cultural context at the time remained a partially untold story, which is also therefore a significant part of hidden LGBT history. Amanda’s role as manager of the bookshop at the time put her in the position of potentially appearing at the Old Bailey on charges of defrauding HM customs, and the importation of material deemed obscene.  Her experience was also a key part of the introduction of Section 28 as she was the person who deposited the title ‘Jenny lives with Eric and Martin’ into the schools library at their request, for material showing positive images of young people and homosexuality. The visibility of lesbian activism in providing a space for marginalised groups such as ‘Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners’ to meet at the bookshop was entirely omitted from the 2004 film Pride. The reasons for this are unclear but it does raise a question about lesbian visibility in history, which elements of her story demonstrate.

The LGBTQ+ History Club is open to all (18+) and free. Booking however is necessary as the Club is very popular and capacity is limited. Please reserve your free ticket HERE

Brought to you by Queer in Brighton & Pink Fringe

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