three cities, three themes: porn, aging and lady parts

It would appear there’s a ton of stuff going on in the next couple of weeks which I must miss. Of course I’ll be missing these things because I’ll be hanging out in sunny San Francisco attending and speaking the Leather Leadership Conference (just for starters) so I’m not really complaining. So, for those in Montreal, Toronto and Ottawa, read on. I’ll start with my general rundown; the details of each event are posted below.

Montreal: The theme is porn. I just recently missed posting about a porn panel that took place in Montreal not long ago – I hear it was really interesting. In case porn’s still on your mind, McGill is screening the classic Annie Sprinkle’s Herstory of Porn on Tuesday, April 15. Check it out, if you haven’t already.

(Okay, a quick edit: I forgot to add that Dean Spade, trans legal activist extraordinaire, will be giving a lecture on Friday, April 11. Details are below – this guy is definitely worth going to see!)

Toronto: The theme is aging, age and age difference. Fascinating contrast with Montreal, but maybe that’s just because Toronto’s all porned out. There’s been a whackload of porn stuff going on this week, including the Feminist Porn Awards on Friday night of this past weekend – now that was a fun evening! – to the screening of the nominated films on Saturday night (I missed it, but I hear there was some hot stuff on the screen), to a pair of workshops given by none other than FTM porn star Buck Angel at Come As You Are last night and tonight. Last night, Buck talked about making your own porn; tonight he talks about becoming sexually comfortable as a “man with a pussy.” I don’t qualify on that count, but I’ll be taking notes for Boi M and a couple of my lovers. Anyway, I will save my reflections on Buck’s talks for a future post, which I’ll probably write from a sidewalk café in California. (Sorry, can’t help it, I’m excited.)

Ahem. As I was saying, aging. On Wednesday, April 9, the 519 Community Centre is hosting a conference on GLBT folks and aging. Of note, hottie Helen Kennedey will be giving that morning’s keynote – for anyone who’s into articulate grey-haired butch dykes with lots of powerful stuff to say, you really don’t want to miss this. Even if you that particular version of sexy doesn’t make your mouth water, she’s well worth watching. I mean listening to. On a related theme, on Saturday, April 12, the Sherbourne Centre is hosting an intergenerational workshop for trans activists in the hopes of bringing together older and younger trans folks and allies to learn from one another. I very much wish I could make it to this one! Please, if someone goes, can you let me know how it went?

Ottawa: The theme is lady parts. More specifically, women’s health of the reproductive variety. Heavy-hitting women’s health activist Abby Lipmann will be giving a talk about the politics of the much-publicized HPV vaccine on Friday, April 11. Again, I totally wish I could go – Lipmann is a renowned speaker on such issues, and there have definitely been lots of politics around this new vaccine in terms of how much protection it actually affords the women who use it, what women are encouraged to use it and why, and what risks the vaccine brings with it – both real ones and ones fabricated by the Christian Right. Fascinating; I’d love to hear her take on the situation. Also, on May 3, there will be a major protest against Bill C-484, “The Unborn Victims of Crime Act,” which has now passed its second reading in Parliament. Not cool! We definitely want to be keeping an eye on this one, so that anti-choice nutcases don’t sneak a bill past us that purports to be about protecting women from violence (that kind of language always makes me suspicious) and is really about preventing our access to abortion.

All the details are below. Please let me know how it all goes if you attend anything!

***

MONTREAL

Trans Resistance and Premature Death – A Lecture by Dean Spade

Friday, April 11, 2008 – 6pm

McGill University

Room 304, McConnell Engineering Building, 3480 University Street

(*wheelchair accessible)

Dean Spade founded the Sylvia Rivera Law Project (SRLP) in 2002, an innovative law collective focused on gender, racial, and economic justice which provides free legal help to low-income people and people of color facing gender identity and/or expression discrimination. He is currently a Law Teaching Fellow at the UCLA School of Law’s Williams Institute and is teaching Law and Social Movements at Harvard Law School. Dean’s most recent article, “Documenting Gender,” forthcoming in the Hastings Law Journal this spring, examines the impact of the recent War on Terror policies on transgender populations.

Dean will also present a workshop about the Sylvia Rivera Law Project and his experience with collective organizing around gender issues on Saturday, April 12th, at the 2110 Center for Gender Advocacy. To sign up contact (514) 848-2424 (ex 7431), or<centre2110@gmail.com>.

***

This April, Divergence Movie Night in collaboration with Queer McGill presents…

ANNIE SPRINKLE’S HERSTORY OF PORN

The Herstory of Porn is a cult classic porn-art documentary that is both educational and entertaining. It examines important cultural topics including censorship, controversial art, feminism, gender issues and sex education.
Annie Sprinkle & Sheila Malone / 69 min / 1999

Tuesday April 15th
Doors @ 7:15pm – Show @ 7:30pm
Lev Bukhman Room, 2nd Floor Shatner, 3480 Rue McTavish
Free Admission / 5$ Suggested Donation to DMN
A facilitated discussion will follow the film.
This space is accessible for wheelchairs.

****************

TORONTO

Wednesday, April 9, 2008
“Opening the Closet on Aging: Amazing Lives!”
A Conference for LGBTT Seniors and Service Providers
Focusing on the special issues of older Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transsexual, Transgender and Queer (LGBTTQ) people and their needs in the areas of long-term care, health, home care, recreation, mental health and rehabilitation. The conference will provide a unique opportunity for service providers and LGBTTQ community members to learn, gain skills and share ideas.

Presented by the Senior Pride Network and The 519 Church Street Community Centre
*MORNING*
8:30 – Registration
9:00 – Welcome, Introductions, Housekeeping, Dignitaries
9:30 – Keynote Speaker, Helen Kennedy, Executive Director of Egale Canada, with short films by Nancy Nicol: Pride and Resistance
10:30 – Break
– Concurrent film program 10:30 to 3:30
10:45 – Presentation on Making Long Term Care Gay Friendly
12:00 – Lunch
*AFTERNOON*
12:45 – (Seniors) Getting Ready, Navigating the System
– (Service Providers) Queer Health Matters, Depression and LGBTT Aging
2:00 – Break
2:15 – Real Lives: Shattering Myths and Stereotypes (Seniors and Service Providers)
3:30 – Wrap Up, Recommendations, Evaluation

Information: Jack Cunningham, Conference Coordinator – 416 392 6878 ext 306 or seniors2@the519. org
Where? Metro Central YMCA, 20 Grosvenor Street

8:30 am – 4:30 pm

$75 for service providers and free for LGBTT seniors

***

Trans-Generational Trans Activists Learning Together

A 101 skills-building workshop for committed trans people & allies who want to get (more) involved in community activism as a way to help improve the lives of trans people.

The aim of this innovative workshop is to bring together a diverse group of older & younger trans people, trans people of colour, two-spirit & Aboriginal trans people, as well as our non-trans allies so we can learn from and teach one another to become (more) effective/strategic at trans advocacy. The first half will comprise the large-group skills-building component (1. choosing a focus; 2. preventing burnout; 3. anti-oppression framework; 4. getting connected/started); The second half will include small-group interactive work. Facilitators & presenters are: Rupert Raj, Michelle Le-Claire & Sherbourne Health Centre staff: Terri Mathews & Yasmeen Persad

Saturday April 12, 2008
Time: 10:00 am – 4:00 pm
Location: Sherbourne Health Centre, 333 Sherbourne Street, Toronto, ON

Space is limited so please pre-register with Geoff MacDonald: (416) 324-4100, x5058 or gmacdonald@sherbourne.on.ca

A 2008 LGBTQ Health Matters Week event – http://www.lgbtqhealthmattersweek.com

****************

OTTAWA

On the occasion of International Women’s Day, the Institute of Women’s Studies of the University of Ottawa is pleased to invite you to the Shirley Greenberg Annual Lecture in Women’s Studies entitled

“Three Shots Heard ‘Round the World: HPV Vaccines and the Politics of Women’s Health”

given by

Abby Lippman, PhD
Professor, Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Occupational Health, McGill University
Chair, Policy Advisory Committee, Canadian Women’s Health Network (CWHN)

Friday, April 11, 2008 at 5:00 p.m.
Alumni Auditorium
85 University Private

FREE ADMISSION

A reception will follow the presentation.

R.S.V.P. by April 7, 2008 (613-562-5791; womenst@uOttawa.ca)

ABBY LIPPMAN, PhD

A professor in the Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics, and Occupational Health, with cross appointments in the Departments of Social Sciences and Medicine and Family Medicine at McGill University, Abby Lippman has been engaged in women’s health issues for over 30 years as an academic and activist. Currently, Professor Lippman is Chair of the Policy Advice committee, a member of the steering committee of Women and Health Protection and past Chair of the Board of the Canadian Women’s Health Network. Her work focuses on feminist studies of applied genetic and reproductive technologies as well as on critical analyses of health and pharmaceutical policies. Specifically Professor Lippman examines the politics of women’s health, and has developed the concepts of “geneticization” and “neo-medicalization” to analyze and understand contemporary approaches to, and applications of, biotechnology to women’s health.

***

For immediate release:

Contact: opposebillc484@gmail.com

Headline: “Moving backwards in fight for abortion rights”

Ottawa, ON – May 3rd, 2008 – On May 3rd, 2008 from 12:00 PM to 3:00 PM a protest opposing Bill C-484 will take place at the Peace Tower. Bill C-484, “The Unborn Victims of Crime Act,” has passed its second reading in Parliament as of March 5th, 2008. The bill creates a separate offence for killing a foetus when a pregnant woman is murdered. It gives an unborn foetus some human rights in these cases, which is a cause for concern in the pro-choice community. Under current Canadian Law, human foetuses are not considered persons(s) until they are born alive. If Bill C-484 should pass, the laws would be in conflict because the foetus would be considered a person and therefore the right to a legal abortion would come into question, as well as the rights of pregnant women in general. The law is clearly not concerned with the roots of violence against women and thus this bill would be a detriment to women’s rights. Similar laws have been passed in the U.S. resulting in dozens of women being punished for trying to “harm their child”. Let’s not let this happen in Canada.

We believe that the Government should look to pass laws that increase the sentencing upon those who commit violent acts against women, instead of passing laws just for foetuses that give women no ounce of protection and infringe on their rights.

Women and men are encouraged to come join us and the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada at the Peace Tower on May 3rd, 2008 to show their solidarity.

We are encouraging supporters across Canada to hold similar protests as a sign of nationwide solidarity against Bill C-484.


6 thoughts on “three cities, three themes: porn, aging and lady parts

  1. Also looking forward to the Buck Angel post. How do the workshops at Come As You Are work? How many people (generally) show up? ps- I e-mailed you my response to the kink conference, please forgive my prejudice. =)

  2. CAYA workshops – you can register ahead by phone or online, or just show up and hope there’s space, though advance registration is usually best. Numbers seem to depend on the presenter and topic and date and a dozen other factors, but I’d say between 5 and 30 people? Dunno, you’d have to ask the staff. And thanks for your e-mail, very interesting… I still think you should consider posting it here for others to enjoy, but I appreciate reading it myself at least!🙂

  3. Oh, sorry. Probably in the comments section after the original post would be good. I’m a little brain-dead here, beg your pardon.

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