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Marsha P. Johnson, Pride

Marsha P. Johnson, Pride:

makingqueerhistory:

“As a transgender woman of colour, who took part in and incited riots, who was also was a sex worker, Marsha P. Johnson is everything that the queer movement has tried to pretend doesn’t exist. She is everything we should be proud of.

She was vocal, talented, generous, and stood up for the queer community time and time again. The reason she has not been forgotten has not been because of the queer community, but because of the people, she knew. Because, though she was pushed aside by some, she was loved by so many others. Her friends have worked to make sure what she has done for the queer community will not be forgotten. Though parts of the community may try to brush her aside, we want to do our best and aid in pushing her into the place in the history books she deserved. She is our history, and she embodied the ideals of pride in its purest form.”

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Institute of Sexology, a Place of Learning

Institute of Sexology, a Place of Learning:

The existence of the Institute in Berlin, Germany, may be surprising, given the way most of Germany’s history has been framed. Before the rise of Hitler, however, Germany was the heart of queer activism in Europe. Some of the most prolific queer researchers and doctors made their homes in Berlin, and because of their presence, the city became a hotbed for advocacy and open discussion. Naturally, much of that open discussion can be attributed to the existence of the Institut für Sexualwissenschaft.

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Queer Women and AFAB People During the Holocaust

Queer Women and AFAB People During the Holocaust:

This article contains mentions of forced sex work, corrective rape, and forced pregnancy.


Now, we set the scene. Before the Nazis came to power, Berlin was one of the safer places for queer people in Europe. As discussed in previous articles, Berlin had developed a rich queer culture that embraced open-mindedness and knowledgeable study of queer lives. There were queer bars, clubs, societies, libraries, and so on. Despite the general atmosphere of safety, however, homosexuality between two people societally defined as men was still illegal under Paragraph 175. It is important to note that Paragraph 175 did not make romantic or sexual relationships between two people societally defined as women illegal. This is where many historical summaries of the lives of queer women in Germany stop, but it is not where history stops.

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Magnus Hirschfeld, the Founder

Magnus Hirschfeld, the Founder:

While the Institute was one of his most prestigious achievements, it is not his only one. As a doctor, Hirschfeld spent much of his life researching queer people and their lives, believing knowledge would be the bridge to equality. He was the first recorded person to run a scientific survey of queer people, and while some information he gathered has since been disproved or modified, he was still years ahead of his time.

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San Domino, Gay Island

San Domino, Gay Island:

We begin in Italy, 1938. Hitler is coming into power as is another man of great infamy: Benito Mussolini. Among many other things, one of Mussolini’s visions for Italy’s future was to present the country as being filled with ‘perfect’ men. The Mussolini of 1938 had built a clear image of the ‘perfect’ man: husband, father, soldier, and as traditionally masculine as possible. In his mind, gay men did not fit this ideal. He believed being gay was the same as being feminine, and most likely mislabeled other queer identities as gay, thus harming more of the queer community than he originally anticipated (though, if he had been aware of what he was doing, we’re certain he would’ve been pleased). So, among many other atrocities, he planned to eradicate gay men from Italy. What made this slightly complicated was that he wanted to do so without admitting their existence.  

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Marsha P. Johnson, Pride

Marsha P. Johnson, Pride:

makingqueerhistory:

“As a transgender woman of colour, who took part in and incited riots, who was also was a sex worker, Marsha P. Johnson is everything that the queer movement has tried to pretend doesn’t exist. She is everything we should be proud of.

She was vocal, talented, generous, and stood up for the queer community time and time again. The reason she has not been forgotten has not been because of the queer community, but because of the people, she knew. Because, though she was pushed aside by some, she was loved by so many others. Her friends have worked to make sure what she has done for the queer community will not be forgotten. Though parts of the community may try to brush her aside, we want to do our best and aid in pushing her into the place in the history books she deserved. She is our history, and she embodied the ideals of pride in its purest form.”

MAKE A ONE TIME DONATION

BECOME A PATRON

Khnumhotep and Niankhkhnum, and Occam’s Razor

Khnumhotep and Niankhkhnum, and Occam’s Razor:

makingqueerhistory:

“In the hieroglyphs on their tombs,  the two men are also shown holding hands, kissing, and sitting next to each other; one of their portraits has them nose to nose, embracing in a way that was used when depicting a married couple. They both had wives and children, but they are not depicted often in the tombs.When they were, they were off to the side, never taking precedence or focus. The focus was almost always on the two men together.When they are portrayed at a table, they sit together in the seating arrangement expected of a married couple. Besides all of this, the names we have for them are not their given names, but how people referred to them. Their names together roughly translate out to “joined in life, joined in death.”” 

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Kristina, King of Sweden

Kristina, King of Sweden:

makingqueerhistory:

“It is important first to note we are not the first to struggle with defining Kristina’s gender; in fact, it has mystified people since the day she was born in December of 1626 in Stockholm, Sweden. When the nurses initially saw her, she was announced as a boy. They took a day to correct the misjudgment for fear of her father’s reaction, as he had been trying for a male heir and had a famously nasty temper. But he surprised most of the country by taking the news rather well, deciding that she would be his heir regardless of what chromosomes she was born with and he would not treat her differently than he had planned to treat a prince.”

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Sappho, the Poetess

Sappho, the Poetess:

makingqueerhistory:

“Sappho has been ranked among the greatest poets of all time since there have been rankings of poets and has more than earned her spot. Her work is both prolific and groundbreaking for its time, leading the way for thousands of other poets who came after her. While much of her work was lost in the destruction of the Library of Alexandria, and much of it has been destroyed by religious leaders, the fragments that were recovered are enough for her still to be remembered and admired. Sometimes in spite of her queerness, and other times because of it.”

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About the Project

About the Project:

makingqueerhistory:

Just to let you all know we have restructured the design of the website slightly and we encourage you all to take some time and check it out!