5.30pm to 8pm
17:30 Doors open
18:00 - 19:15 Panel discussion
19:15 - 20:00 Reception
It’s 2017 and Britain has been marking 50 years since the partial decriminalisation of male homosexuality in England and Wales. At the same time, many have also been acknowledging the exclusion, discrimination, and danger that lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people continue to face here and around the world.
Then, as now, using dress and comportment to signal queerness has been a key factor in how LGBTI+ people identify themselves and others whilst trying to avoid being too identifiable to the wrong people in the wrong places. Despite the personal faith and participation of many LGBTQ individuals, many religious cultures and institutions have long suppressed and rejected queer behaviours and individuals. Queer visibility within religious communities remains rarely uncomplicated. At the same time, religious sensibilities are having an increased impact on the previously secular presumptions of much LGBTQ activism.
Joining LCF’s Professor Reina Lewis to explore how the styled body figures in the relationship between religion, ethnicity, spirituality, and sexualities will be: Asad Dhunna, speaker, writer, communications director, and founder of the Big Gay Iftar which hosted attendees of all faiths and none for a Ramadan meal at St. Andrew’s Church in Southwark during this year’s London Pride; the Reverend Sally Hitchiner, coordinating chaplain of the multifaith chaplaincy centre in Brunel University and founder and Director of Diverse Church, a ground-breaking movement of online communities of over 700 LGBT Christians throughout the UK and Ireland; and Dr Sarah-Jane Page, sociologist of religion and senior lecturer at Aston University, Birmingham, who has researched the religious and sexual identities of young people from a wide range of religious traditions across the UK. For her study of power dynamics in dress and religion, Sarah focused on women priests in the Church of England.
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Image: Courtesy of Julian Burgess on Flickr