LGBT narratives series hosted by Liverpool Hope UniversityWednesday 10 February 2016
Dr Elena Boschi, Elliot Hardman (Doctoral Researcher) from the Department of Media and Communication and Susan Forde (Doctoral Researcher) from the Department of History Politics have organised a LGBT narratives seminar series at Liverpool Hope University to coincide with LGBT history month and beyond.
The LGBT history month lecture and screening series includes talks that reflect on the progress of LGBT activism and LGBT cinema. The organising team arranged for a bake sale at the event to fundraise for Gay Youth R Out (GYRO), a local LGBT youth charity.
The first event took place in the Grace Room (Creative Campus) on Feb 4th 2016, with support from the Department of Media and Communication and the Popular Culture Research Group.
Dr. Tim McNelis, a lecturer in Film at Falmouth University, was invited by the Media and Communication department to give a guest seminar at the LGBT event. Dr. McNelis is currently writing two books, US Youth Films and Popular Music: Identity, Genre, and Musical Agency, and Precious: Identity, Adaptation, and the African American Youth Film (both for Routledge). He is also the author of chapters on youth films in the collections International Cinema and the Girl: Local Issues, Transnational Contexts (Palgrave, 2016) and The Time of Our Lives: Dirty Dancing and Popular Culture (Wayne State UP, 2013). Tim has co-authored an article on songs in the films of Wes Anderson and a chapter on visible playback technology in film.
Dr. Tim McNelis discussed the film All Over Me (Alex Sichel, 1997), explaining how for him, the film represented an important cultural text “to bring issues to the foreground that are in the film, in relation to the film as a queer film, the film as a feminist film and the relationship between the politics of the film and the music [within the film].”
All Over Me begins with teenage best friends Claude (Alison Folland) and Ellen (Tara Subkoff) living a normal life in New York City. Claude is discovering that her feelings for Ellen go beyond platonic friendship to a desire for a romantic relationship. However, it soon becomes clear that Ellen neither shares Claude’s desire nor her love of guitar playing. The threat of violence soon arrives in the form of Ellen’s new boyfriend Mark (Cole Hauser), and after tragedy strikes in the neighbourhood, the two friends have a falling out. This leads Claude to a space where her queer identity and love of music provide a new agency, as well as a new romantic interest in the form of musician Lucy (Leisha Hailey). While All Over Me confronts homophobic violence, it also shows a positive way forward for girls in feminist spaces, drawing on the contemporary feminist Riot Grrrl music scene. The film also depicts teenage girls who have access to musical performance in ways typically reserved for boys in mainstream teen films.
The next event in the LGBT narratives series will be on 18th February in the Senate Room at Hope Park Campus. The speaker will be Prossy Kakooza, a co-founder of the Lesbian Immigration Support Group in Manchester who was also named a Stonewall Christian role model in 2015. The bake sale, raising funds for GYRO, will start at 5pm and will be near the HCA common room, with the talk starting at 6pm.