Sunday, 23 July 2017

More on Polari

Yesterday (22nd July 2017), I gave a 20 minute presentation on Polari - a favourite topic - at the A Step Forward? event held by the National Archives to mark the 50th anniversary of the Sexual Offences Act 1967.
(http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk)
 
Me in full flow

Speakers included:
  • Sammy Sturgess on the lives of gay men in the 1950s-60s;
  • Dr Caroline Derry on the invisible women of Wolfenden - gay women are barely mentioned in the Wolfenden Report but there's lots of evidence that they were consulted by the Committee in the National Archives;
  • Mark Dunstan on the impact of the Act;
  • Me (Chris Park) on Polari as a form of social camouflage;
  • Dan Glass on Queer Tours of London and modern activism; and last but definitely not least
  • Jeffrey Weeks on the legacy of the 1967 Act.
The feedback from the attendees was gratifying positive. :o)

Here are the slides and my speaking notes for my part:
We also got our friends at the National Archives to print out a few copies of my 'pocket dictionary of Polari', so here's that file too:

Feel free to share, if you know someone who would be interested.


Thursday, 13 July 2017

A History of UK LGBT Law

On Tuesday 11th July, I gave a presentation for South London Gays.
(http://www.southlondongays.org.uk/)

"LGBT in Justice" is a short talk, tracing the main changes to UK law, starting with Henry VIII in 1533 to the present day, that affect LGBT+ people. The main target has tended to be male-male same sex behaviour, but there are a few other interesting items along the way. For instance, did Queen Victoria really not believe in Lesbians? To be honest, I have no idea, However, look for the item from 1921...

If you're interested in reading a bit more, you can download my speaking notes from OneDrive here:
https://1drv.ms/w/s!AmNn5dfpgGQng4d7EikjeYvoYkjMZg

This talk is based on a PowerPoint presentation. You can download the original slides here:
https://1drv.ms/b/s!AmNn5dfpgGQng4d89u1RA37R2rmxGQ
The 1921 item is on on slide 7 and 8. 


I should also make a disclaimer at this point: The presentation does not pretend to include every possible law that affects LGBT+ people. It does try, however, to hit the lowlights and the highlights.