What began as a gay movement in the Stonewall period became more differentiated in the wake of gender studies and the recognition of a whole spectrum of gender identities. The ACT UP movement of the 1980s and 1990s in particular challenged traditional notions of gender in academia, society, and politics.
But even today members of the gay and lesbian mainstream often struggle to accept non-binary gender identities. Even though these groups were and continue to be instrumental in overcoming traditional roles – now more than ever, as the heteronormative and homosexual lifestyles of the 21st century converge.
Roland Emmerich’s ambitious attempt to process the Stonewall events in a film failed in the eyes of a large part of the audience precisely because it did not take sufficient account of the decisive role that queer people outside the gay/lesbian dichotomy played in the revolt.
How do we deal with the reality of queer diversity? How can small minorities be granted equal rights?Are there any historical precedents? How can the history of the struggle against gender discrimination be rewritten? Does it make sense to differentiate gender identities any further?
In partnership with
Complementary to the exhibition Queer as German Folk, panel discussions were held in Toronto, New York, Mexico City, and Berlin. Under the banner Queer Commons – Queer Conflicts, they highlighted diverse aspects of contemporary queer discourse: queer resistance, queer culture, queer diversity and queer establishment. The discussions – held in English with panelists from the US, Canada, Mexico and Germany – were recorded and are available on this website.