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Affinity partners with StoryCorps to queer Black history
From a press release
2015-02-10

This article shared 2846 times since Tue Feb 10, 2015
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CHICAGO, FEBRUARY 10, 2015 - On February 26th, Affinity Community Services ( Affinity ) and StoryCorps OUTLoud are hosting a program at the Chicago Urban League that features interviews of Black people who identify as LGBTQ and allies. The interviews were conducted on January 24th when Affinity booked StoryCorps' recording booth for the full day. The booth is located in the Chicago Cultural Center.

On recording day six pairs of individuals who had been matched by the hosts recorded 45 minute conversations. The conversation topics varied widely and included the importance of strong role models, coming out, participating in the Stonewall Riots, and living in the south during the civil rights struggles of the 1960s. Participants include Gloria Allen, a trans woman activist who is nearly 70, Charlene Carruthers, national co-chair for Black Youth Project 100, Willa J. Taylor, director of education and community engagement at Goodman Theatre, and Christina Smith, founding board president of Affinity.

"History is often unwittingly made by the contributions of everyday people just living their lives," says Kim L. Hunt, executive director of Affinity. "With StoryCorps Affinity is able provide a twist to the typical Black History Month program by unpacking the ways that Black people who identify as LGBTQ live through and make history on the ground. And we are extremely pleased to have this program at the Chicago Urban League."

For the February 26th program, clips will be played from some of the interviews recorded in January and during an Affinity/StoryCorps partnership in 2012. After each clip, the audience will engage in a facilitated conversation about the themes raised in the clip. Many of the interview pairings were intergenerational so we are expecting a lively and informative conversation.

The Legacy Project ( LP ) will have a temporary display of Black LGBTQ people in history during the program. LP is the world's only outdoor museum walk and youth education program dedicated to combatting anti-gay bullying by celebrating LGBT contributions to history. ( legacyprojectchicago.org )

This free event is open to the public. The venue is wheelchair accessible. Light refreshments will be served.

Queering Black History With Our Stories

Thursday, February 26, 2015

6:00pm - 8:00pm

Chicago Urban League 4510 S. Michigan Ave. Chicago, IL

About The Organizations

Affinity is a social justice organization that works with and on behalf of Black LGBTQ communities, queer youth, and allies to identify emergent needs, create safe spaces, develop leaders, and bridge communities through collective analysis and action for social justice, freedom, and human rights. ( www.affinity95.org )

StoryCorps' mission is to provide people of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share and preserve the stories of our lives. StoryCorps' Griot initiative documents the varied lives of people with roots in the African Diaspora living in the US ( storycorps.org/griot/ ). SotryCorps' Outloud is dedicaed to preserving the experiences of the LGBTQ community ( storycorps.org/outloud/ ).


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