Presenters have been asked to comment on the motivations, perspectives and sources that inform their work in LGBT history as well as their thoughts regarding the upcoming conference. Lois Stone, a PhD student in Archaeology at the University of Manchester, offers the following reflections:
I became interested in studying gender and sexuality in the past as a way of trying to find myself, or people like me, in history.
I try to do all of my research with the idea that people with gender identities and sexualities that do not conform with society’s expectations have always existed. These people may have been little recorded or actively excluded, but they existed. The task now is making sure that they are remembered.
I am an archaeologist, so a lot of my work comes from site reports and archaeological ‘grey’ literature, but I also draw heavily from trans autobiographies and academic writings.
I am most looking forward to meeting other academics in the field. We can be so spread out, and it is an incredibly gratifying feeling to be surrounded by people who are invested in the same sort of research that I am.
This conference is a wonderful way to feel a part of the academic community, and specifically a part of the LGBTQ academic community. It is always worth coming.