On Tuesday, hundreds of students, faculty and staff donned yellow shirts that read “Respect. All genders. All sexualities,” for Bowdoin Queer-Straight Alliance’s (BQSA) seventh Yellow Shirt Day. A part of programming for OUTtober, the event is hosted annually near National Coming Out Day in order to show solidarity for the LGBTQ+ community at the College.
As part of OUTtober, Bowdoin Queer Straight Alliance (BQSA) sent 13 students to Bates College’s first Maine Youth Summit and Queer/ Trans Conference last Saturday. Open to both college students and community members such as LGBTQIA+ youth, parents and college faculty and staff, the conference allowed Bowdoin students to immerse themselves in a large, diverse group of queer and trans people.
This month is the College’s first annual OUTtober, a month of programming by Bowdoin Queer Straight Alliance (BQSA) celebrating various sexuality and gender identities. In the past, BQSA has organized events during the week of National Coming Out Day on October 11 and has hosted a month of programming in February, known as “Februqueery.” OUTtober will replace “Februqueery” as BQSA’s month-long series of events, although BQSA will continue to recognize Transgender Day of Visibility on March 31.
Ann BasuDISABILITY DISCOURSE: Poet and activist Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha (right) speaks with Maddie Lemal-Brown ’18 (left) and Sabrina Hunte ’20 (center) after her performance in Kresge Auditorium last night. A “queer disabled nonbinary femme writer and cultural worker of Burger/Tamil Sri Lankan and Irish/Roma ascent” is how Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha describes herself on her website.
Ann BasuQUEERING THE MUSEUM: Jonathan Katz, founder of the Harvey Milk Institute and visual culture scholar, spoke about censorship of Warhol’s art. In his lecture on Wednesday, Jonathan Katz argued that pop art is an inherently queer form of self-expression, an idea originally censored in a now fully-published interview with Andy Warhol.
Ann Basu By hosting speakers from a queer disabled writer to a black transgender reverend, Bowdoin Queer Straight Alliance (BQSA) hopes that the first annual “OUTtober” will reflect and engage with a wider range of Bowdoin’s LGBTQ community.