The world’s largest group of Rights and Justice scholars will be marking LGBT History Month at The University of Nottingham through a series of events.
2015 was an important year in LGBT rights: Mexico and Ireland extended marriage to same-sex couples, Mozambique decriminalised homosexuality, and the US Supreme Court ruled in favour of marriage equality. However, LGBT people in Nigeria experienced violence in the wake of an extreme anti-LGBT law, gay men and women fled a crackdown in Gambia, and Slovenia refused marriage equality.
2016 will see both the impact of these developments and new challenges. It also sees a renewed focus on LGBT rights as human rights: in late 2015, the UN Secretary-General demanded protection for LGBT people worldwide, and 12 UN agencies issued a joint statement on combatting violence and discrimination against LGBT people – the first of its kind.
Exploring LGBT justice
Now, scholars at The University of Nottingham are joining together through ‘The Rights and Justice research priority area (RPA)’, which will explore LGBT rights and justice worldwide during the University's largest ever programme for LGBT History Month.
Throughout February academics will debate LGBT Rights as Human Rights, including gay marriage in the US, queer activism in India and LGBT rights in Colombia; share three powerful and rarely-seen international films on gay and transgender rights as part of an LGBT film festival at Nottingham Contemporary; join renowned performer and playwright Mojisola Adebayo for a retrospective and discussion about her international work at Nottingham Writer's Studio.
The group of experts will also turn from the global to the national, with a screening of the acclaimed BBC drama London Spy featuring a discussion by writer/producer Tom Rob Smith (author of Child 44) at Broadway Cinema; and to the local, with a discussion about hate crime in Nottingham with Rainbow Heritage, local activists and Nottinghamshire Police at Five Leaves Bookshop.
World’s largest group of scholars
The RPA’s LGBT History Month Director Hannah-Rose Murray said: “We are really excited that most of our events take place in the city centre in collaboration with our community partners, as part of our campus/city rights and justice collaboration. We’re looking forward to engaging with the campus and city on rights and justice issues during the University’s biggest ever LGBT History Month.”
The University’s RPA in Rights and Justice is the world’s largest cluster of rights and justice scholars, with 700 staff members, 250 postgraduates and 19 research centres. It is a flagship initiative of the University’s new Research Strategy.
The group has also launched a new listing of scholars with LGBT research expertise.
Professor Zoe Trodd, Co-director of the RPA in Rights and Justice, said: “The University of Nottingham is the UK’s socially-engaged campus, home to a world-leading group of rights and justice scholars, many of whom focus on LGBTQ history and politics. Our LGBT History Month programme is an important statement by the University of its support for LGBT rights and justice.”
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Notes to editors: The University of Nottingham has 43,000 students and is ‘the nearest Britain has to a truly global university, with a “distinct” approach to internationalisation, which rests on those full-scale campuses in China and Malaysia, as well as a large presence in its home city.’ (Times Good University Guide 2016). It is also one of the most popular universities in the UK among graduate employers and the winner of ‘Outstanding Support for Early Career Researchers’ at the Times Higher Education Awards 2015. It is ranked in the world’s top 75 by the QS World University Rankings 2015/16, and 8th in the UK by research power according to the Research Excellence Framework 2014. It has been voted the world’s greenest campus for three years running, according to Greenmetrics Ranking of World Universities.
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