Three people holding up signs saying 'we're gay!' at a previous LGBT+ event at Leeds City Museum

OUTing the Past: LGBT+ History Online Conference


12 February 2022

9:50 am - 2:00 pm

Venue Leeds City Museum

Join us for this year’s OUTing the Past event as we host the conference online to a live audience. Hosted by Leeds City Museum, OUTing the Past is an international celebration of LGBT+ history and includes an excellent programme of speakers covering a wide range of LGBT+ topics.

The event is free to join but places are limited via Zoom, please visit the OUTing the Past Eventbrite page to book your free place.

Programme Details

9.50 – 10am Welcome and Introduction to Outing The Past – Leeds

10 – 10.30am Alex Holmes (she)

The Secret Lives of Scientists.

LGBTQ+ representation and inclusion in the sciences has historically been erased or kept separate from the work and knowledge. This continues now with calls to keep science away from politics and topical conversation, but identity- either those doing the science or those having science done unto them – is key in the scientific process, interpretation of results and how they are fed into the wider community.


10.40 – 11.10am Luna Morgana (she)

The Gallus of Catterick.

The Gallus of Catterick was an ancient roman trans woman whose remains were discovered in 1982. Join us for a journey through how she would have lived in 4th Century AD Britain.


11.20 – 11.50am Tilen Kolar (he)

Queer Memorials: disrupted space-time.

Queer memorials bring past, present and future together -they disturb the heteronormative public space. This presentation will reveal some of the research findings from the fieldwork in Amsterdam – how activists and everyday users experience the Homomonument and how they interact with it. Moreover, I will share my personal experience and feelings associated with my fieldwork.

12 – 12.30pm Henry Kyem (he)

Growing up gay in Ghana.

A personal story about growing up gay in an African country (Ghana). Having to come to terms with contracting HIV later in life and fleeing to the UK to avoid persecution from family and society for my sexuality.

12.40 – 1pm LUNCH

1 – 1.30pm Deirdre Swain (she)

Murder and forbidden love: the life and work of Patricia Highsmith

Last year marked the 100th anniversary of the birth of Patricia Highsmith, a fascinating writer who changed Deirdre’s life. She is the author of ‘The Talented Mr. Ripley’ and is best known as a mystery and crime novelist. However, her second novel ‘The Price of Salt’, belonged to a different literary genre. It was ground-breaking and unique at the time of its publication in 1952. It is considered to be the first lesbian novel where neither female protagonists find themselves in a tragic situation at the end of the book. It was written under a pseudonym, because Highsmith did not want to be known as a lesbian author. Deirdre’s presentation discusses the novel, ‘The Price of Salt’, the inspiration surrounding it, and the life of Patricia Highsmith, the details of which are compelling and, at times, disturbing.


1.40 – 2pm Aleks Fagelman (they)

Presentations of gender in the ancient world: A discussion of the Dresden Satyr and the Hermaphrodite statue.

Aleks shall discuss the Dresden Satyr and Hermaphrodite statue, as well as comparing it with other examples of hermaphroditic statues in the ancient world. They shall use this to highlight how the history of intersex and transgender identity is something that is not a modern invention but exists for several thousand years.


2.10 – 2.40pm Freya Stancliffe (she)

In search of the invisible

Freya is working on an internship working in the internal archives of the University of Leeds with the goal of increasing the visibility and accessibility of LGBTQ+ voices. This involves looking through reports, correspondence, meeting minute notes, society materials etc. Sadly, LGBTQ+ people feature more through being talked about, rather than having their own narrative voice. The next phase of her work will be outreach and community engagement, attempting to fill some of the gaps that we found in the archives.


2.45 – 2.55pm Final comments and end of the event

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