GLBT Historical Society Honors Gay Movement Pioneer Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld

August 19, 2016 – December 2016
GLBT History Museum
4127 18th St., San Francisco, CA.

The GLBT Historical Society presents a new exhibition which honors gay movement pioneer Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld. This year marks the 85th anniversary of Dr. Magnus Hirsch­feld’s visit to San Francisco. Starting in the late 1890s, Hirschfeld was a groundbreaking defender of homosexual and transgender peo­ple in Germany and beyond. He was internationally renowned as a founder of the Scientific-Humanitarian Committee, the world’s first homosexual advocacy group, and as creator of the Institute for Sexual Science in Berlin. Both organizations were banned when the Nazis came to power in 1933. France welcomed Hirschfeld as an exile during the last two years of his life. He died in Nice and is interred there in the Cimitière de Caucade.

In a new exhibition opening on August 19, The GLBT Historical Society offers an introduction to Hirschfeld’s life, work and legacy. Through Knowledge to Justice: The Sexual World of Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld (1868-1935) features first editions, vintage periodicals and ephemera largely drawn from the collection assembled by curator Gerard Koskovich over the past three decades. In addition, the exhibition will include historic film documenting Hirschfeld’s impact and the fate of his work.

Among the scarce artifacts that will be displayed are the 1898 booklet including the Scientific-Humanitarian Committee’s petition calling for repeal of Germany’s sodomy law; one of the handful of volumes known to have survived the first book-burning of the Nazi regime, where the library of Hirschfeld’s Institute for Sexual Science was consigned to the flames; and publications in French about Hirschfeld, among them a copy of the last book published during his lifetime, inscribed by the author in Nice three weeks before his death.

Through Knowledge to Justice opens August 19 and runs through December 2016.

Queer Trailblazer: Magnus Hirschfeld’s Life & Legacy
The GLBT History Museum
October 10, 2016. 7:00–9:00 p.m.

In conjunction with the GLBT History Museum’s current exhibition about Magnus Hirschfeld, a panel of distinguished historians will discuss his life and legacy:

Mel Gordon, author of “Voluptuous Panic: The Erotic World of Weimar Berlin” (2008), will place Hirschfeld’s work in the context of German sexual culture of the 1920s.
Gayle Rubin, professor of anthropology and women’s studies at the University of Michgan, Ann Arbor, and author of “Deviations: A Gayle Rubin Reader” (2011), will trace Hirschfeld’s influence as a sexologist.
Susan Stryker, author of “Transgender History” (2008), will address Hirschfeld’s contributions to understanding, advocacy and care for transgender people.
Gerard Koskovich, curator of the exhibition “Through Knowledge to Justice: The Sexual World of Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld,” will introduce and moderate the panel.

-> More information here.


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