Every year during February, we celebrate LGBT+ History month to increase visibility and awareness of the issues facing the LGBT+ community. Several events take place across the University, including the annual lecture, organised by the LGBT+ Advisory group. and the Equality and Diversity Unit. This year’s lecture was also held in collaboration with the Saïd Business School.
Opened by Chief Diversity Officer Professor Tim Soutphommasane, this year’s lecture was an opportunity to hear the personal story of trans activist and speaker Max Siegel. Max shared a brief history of trans and gender non-conformist people and the role their stories play in a wider Queer history. He expressed his concerns about the very real threats that exist to the progress made to date, sharing his perspective on how we can continue to build a safe and supportive society.
After his talk, Max spoke with Sarah Stephenson-Hunter, Joint Interim Head of Equality and Diversity, herself a passionate LGBT+ rights activist. Reflecting on their journeys, they explored the process of transition, the issues facing trans people and the need to start with education to create a more inclusive society in which all people are valued.
"I really enjoyed sharing the stage with Max and having the opportunity to dig deeper into our shared experiences. I think too often discussions around trans inclusion can get bogged down in the concepts and theories which whilst important invariably lose sight of the everyday reality of being trans. I really loved the fact we were able to talk about the humanity behind the headlines.”
- Sarah Stephenson-Hunter, Joint Interim Head of Equality and Diversity
You can hear Max’s insightful talk and frank conversation with Sarah here.
WATCH THE LECTURE