Gary Kinsman’s talk will focus on the history of queer liberation organizing in Canada, moving from its radical roots in the social and class struggles of the late 1960s and early 1970s to the moderate, integrationist organizations that dominate in our communities today. These mainstream groups focus on formal legal equality and acceptance within neo-liberal capitalism. Kinsman will argue that we need to resist this new paradigm by remembering
the radical roots and origins of our struggles. The talk will include stories of resistance to the national security campaigns against queers, including some of the organizing that has taken place in Nova Scotia and Halifax. Kinsman will outline the class, racialized and gendered features of the emergence of the “neo-liberal queer” and will offer suggestions on how radical, activist queer organizing can be re-ignited today.
Gary Kinsman is a long-time queer liberation, anti-poverty and anti-capitalist activist. He is the author of The Regulation of Desire: Homo and Hetero Sexualities, co-author (with Patrizia Gentile) of The Canadian War on Queers: National Security as Sexual Regulation, and editor of Whose National Security? And of Sociology for Changing the World. He is currently working on a new book project called The Making of the Neo-Liberal Queer. He lived in Nova Scotia in the early 1990s where he was involved in gay and AIDS activism. He currently teaches sociology at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, on the historic territories of the Atikameksheng Anishnawbek nation where he is active in the Sudbury Coalition Against Poverty and the Palestine Solidarity Working Group.