OUTing the Past: The International Festival of LGBT+ History

Event date(s): 07 March 2020

Several of the people involved in the project | NICRC

The aim of the project is to provide a showcase that brings together examples of best professional practice to protect school pupils and students, while promoting informed inclusive learning environments.

The programme includes the following highlights detailed below.

What does a LGBT+ History Lesson Look like?

Session led by Dr JGM Evans

This opening session is a practical one that showcase a History lesson whose subject matter is human diversity with a focus on LGBT+/Human Rights activism. The aim of the lesson is to provide students with: (1) an insight into specific past events over a period of 3,000 years (2) a chronological framework by which students can begin to better assess continuity and diversity, and (3) evidence on which questions of ‘historical’ significance can be posed.


Education and LGBTQ+ Young People – What resources are available to Schools & Teachers?

Session led by Mr Lee Cullen (Cara-Friend)

In this session, we will be discussing Cara-Friend’s Inclusive Schools Programme. I will be chartering the research into the experiences of LGBT Youth in Education/feedback from teachers to Cara-Friend/Statutory Services leading to the creation of the programme and discussing the response from schools we have worked with. Finally, I will outline the support available to schools through the Inclusive Schools Programme and resources that Cara-Friend has supported or created.


What have we been missing?

A window into or remarkable hidden Irish ‘LGBT+’ past: Part of the collective history of our Ireland. Enriching our schools curriculum, validating our students lives towards a more inclusive community.

Session led by Dr Brian Lacey

Many people assume that homosexuality and other alternative sexualities (identified by the acronym LGBT+) are a modern phenomenon. But these are just aspects of human nature and have been around as long as humans themselves have existed. Most of the human past was literally pre-historic, dating from before the existence of written texts. Writing – and with it history – came to Ireland as part of the arrival of Christianity. The very oldest text in that history, dating to the late 5th century, is St Patricks Confession’ which, interestingly, already refers to ‘queer’ sexuality. From then on homosexuality and related matters are referred to continually in the written sources. The only ‘anti-queer’ law ever made in Ireland was passed in 1634. Since then most relevant evidence tends to come from legal prosecutions and scandals. But before that a whole host of documents confirms that ‘queerness’ was common, and not particularly frowned upon.


Date and Venue

Saturday 7 March 2020

12 – 4pm

Museum of Free Derry


Further Information

Read more about OUTing the Past