Our Next Event

Feminism and Psychoanalysis

Bourgeois BISR Feminism and Psychoanalysis copy

  The Bureau is excited to partner again with the Brooklyn Institute for Social Research to bring you:   Feminism and Psychoanalysis   Instructor: Paige Sweet     Sigmund Freud famously described femininity as a “riddle” and “dark continent.” Yet, the psychoanalytic theories Freud generated, particularly his conception of how the unconscious influences the development [...]

Tue. Nov 12, 2019 6:30 PM

Events

April 23, 2014

“Children and Fools:” Harry Hay and the Mattachine Society, 1930-1953. A talk by Ben Miller

It wasn’t until the 1980s that John D’Emilio, Jonathan Ned Katz, and other scholars (many working independently) began to exhume and bring to life the vital history of American homosexual and homophile movements before the Stonewall rebellion. All serious considerations of that history feature as a central player Harry Hay: activist, troublemaker, theorist, founder of the Mattachine Society and “father” of the American gay rights movements. This talk retells the story of the founding of the Mattachine Society – America’s first gay rights organization, which activist Harry Hay founded in Los Angeles – with an eye towards that history’s relevance to the ideological development of Gay, and by extension LGBTQ, rights in America. Original research conducted using Hay’s personal papers and the papers of the Mattachine Society shows that Hay used Marxist cultural theory to fuse elements of folk music, medieval fooling, and Native American religious and gender traditions into a gay identity that could serve as the basis for political activism, radically challenging existing gender and sexual norms in ways that are too often forgotten in the mainstream literature of LGBTQ history.

Ben Miller will present a second talk on Harry Hay on the following Wednesday, April 30th:

“Children of the Brain:” Harry Hay’s Life, Theory, and Activism, 1953-1964

 

Ben Miller is a New York-based writer and student of history. Current projects include thesis research on early gay activist Harry Hay that has taken him to archives in California and conferences from Pennsylvania to New Mexico, an adaptation of an early Mozart libretto for performance at Carnegie Hall, and new short fiction influenced by his historical research. He is the 2014 winner of New York University’s Bessie and Louis Levy Prize for Excellence in American History, and the recipient of the Steffi Berne Research Scholarship in the Humanities from the same institution. His teachers in history and writing have included Linda Gordon, K. Kevyne Baar, Marcelle Clements, and Jonathan Safran Foer. His academic writing has appeared in HistorianCollege Film and Media Studies, and the Chicago Journal of History; and his short fiction has appeared in BrioStudio on the Square, and West 10th. He is editor or co-editor of several publications, co-founder of Squid Ink Magazine (launching soon), and serves on the communications committee of the New York City Anti-Violence Project. He tweets @benwritesthings.

 

Photo: Reunion of living Mattachine founders, 1980s. From left: Jim Gruber, Dale Jennings, Konrad Stevens, Harry Hay. (San Francisco Public Library, Gay and Lesbian Center.)

 

Start: April 23, 2014 7:00 PM
End: April 23, 2014 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division
Phone: 646 457 0859
Address:
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States

April 22, 2014

Michael Nava: Reading and Signing for CITY OF PALACES

Join Michael Nava for a reading and signing for his new novel City of Palaces

Please note: The Bureau is closed on Tuesdays, but we will open at 5:30 for this event, which will begin at 6:30.

Michael Nava, a third-generation Californian of Mexican descent, and the grandson of immigrants, was born in Sacramento. He was the first person in his family to attend college, graduating with a B.A. in history from the Colorado College.  He later received his law degree from Stanford University.

He began writing when he was 12 years old, around the same time he recognized that he was gay.  In his autobiographical essay Gardenland, a memoir of his childhood in the working-class Mexican neighborhood of the same name, he says he turned to writing because he was filled with words he was otherwise unable to express.

Until he was in his early twenties he studied and wrote poetry exclusively.  A selection of his poems was awarded the 1981 Chicano/Latino Literary Prize given annually by the University of California, Irvine. He began writing what became his first novel as a third year law student at Stanford.  That novel, The Little Death, was published in 1986 by Alyson Publications, a small gay press that accepted the book after 12 other publishers had rejected it.

The Little Death introduced readers to Henry Rios, a gay, Latino criminal defense lawyer based primarily in Los Angeles.  Six further Rios novels followed — Goldenboy (1988),  Howtown (1990),  The Hidden Law (1992),  The Death of Friends (1994),  The Burning Plain (1996), and Rag and Bone (2000).  Each new novel was greeted with wider and greater critical acclaim.  The books were awarded a total of six Lambda Literary Awards and in 2000 Nava was given the Bill Whitehead Award for Lifetime Achievement in gay and lesbian literature.  With Rage and Bone, Nava announced the end of his career as a mystery writer.

Beginning in 1995, Nava started researching a novel about the life of silent film star Ramon Novarro, a Mexican immigrant who came to Hollywood in 1915 after his family fled their homeland during the Mexican Revolution.  Novarro was one of the first generation of internationally famous movie stars, like Rudolph Valentino, Mary Pickford and Charlie Chaplin.  Nava was drawn to Novarro not only because of their shared ethnic heritage but also because it was an open secret in Hollywood that Novarro was gay.

At the same time, he became interested in the Yaquis, an Indian tribe that inhabited the northwest state of Sonora along the border with Arizona. In the late nineteeth century, the Mexico government began to forcibly evict the Yaquis from their ancient homeland, a lush river valley at the edge of the Sonoran desert, to make way for Mexican settlers.  But the Yaquis put up a fierce resistance and the Mexican government ultimately pursued a policy of extermination against the tribe that resulted in its virtual extinction.  Nava’s great-grandparents were among the few Yaquis who had survived by escaping to Arizona where his grandfather, Ramón, was born in 1905.

Eventually, these interests converged and he began to write a novel that would tell the story of the Mexican Revolution, the near-genocide of the Yaquis, and the rise of silent film.  Midway through his first draft, he recognized that this undertaking was too vast for a single book, so he conceived a series of novels called The Children of Eve, after the line in the Salve Regina addressed to Mary, the mother of Jesus:  “To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve.”  The first novel in that series is The City of Palaces, which is set in Mexico City in the years before and at the beginning of the 1910 Mexican Revolution.

In addition to his novels, Nava has had a distinguished career as an appellate lawyer working primarily in the California court system including the California Supreme Court.  As a lawyer, he has been a tireless advocate for greater diversity in the legal profession.  A fuller biography of Michael Nava is available on Wikipedia. See also profile on glbtq.com

Nava is currently at work on the second book – as yet untitled –  in The Children of Eve series.

 

 

 

 

Start: April 22, 2014 6:30 PM
End: April 22, 2014 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division
Phone: 646 457 0859
Address:
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States

April 20, 2014

Opening Reception for Split + Growing: Synesthesia and Queer Thought, A New Show by Ketch Wehr

Split + Growing is a new, highly personal exhibit of work from transfeminist painter and illustrator Ketch Wehr.  Primarily illustrative gouache paintings, Wehr’s show explores his personal understanding of his gender and queerness from an early age through the lens of synesthesia. Synesthesia is a condition which, in his case, lends colors and flavors to all letters and words.  Split + Growing is the visual display of an evolving queer selfhood through the colors Wehr knew to be part of his identity before he had the words to describe it.

Split + Growing runs from Sunday, April 20, through Sunday, May 25

 

 

 

Start: April 20, 2014 6:00 PM
End: April 20, 2014 9:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division
Phone: 646 457 0859
Address:
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States

April 19, 2014

Against Equality: Queer Revolution Not Mere Inclusion

Since 2009, the Against Equality collective has been challenging the gay mainstream and revitalizing the queer political imagination. Against Equality: Queer Revolution Not Mere Inclusion is the collective’s opportunity to share its newest work with the world—a collection of all of the collective’s books in one concise edited volume to be published by AK Press in April 2014. Ryan Conrad, the co-founder of the Against Equality archive and editor of all of the collective’s anthologies, will join us at the Bureau for a reading and discussion of the new collection.

 

 

 

 

Start: April 19, 2014 7:00 PM
End: April 19, 2014 10:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division
Phone: 646 457 0859
Address:
83A Hester St., New York, 10002, United States
Cost: 0

April 17, 2014

A COCKTAIL OF GLAMOUR & ANARCHY

A COCKTAIL OF GLAMOUR & ANARCHY with original Cockette RUMI MISSABU in person! Accompanied by AGOSTO MACHADO, JARVIS EARNSHAW & JOE E. JEFFREYS and Special Guests MAX STEELE, MARK GOLAMCO, & Rachel Mason.

Rumi Missabu, actor/male actress, performance artist, director-producer, mentor and original member and archivist for the gender-bending early 70s counterculture troupe The Cockettes, once described as like the Little Rascals in drag doing Busby Berkeley on acid, Rumi Missabu, hosts an evening of conversation, spoken word, film clips, and musical interludes withspecial guests. Guaranteed to be a fun-filled romp laced with pure nostalgia that bridges the gap between the Summer of Love and thetimes of Harvey Milk.

Rumi on stairs

Rumi Missabu aka James Bartlett was born in Hollywood, CA in 1947. As a young actor he went from appearing in Disney films: BLACKBEARD’S GHOST, THE ONE AND ONLY ORIGINAL FAMILY BAND, to soft-core porn: ELEVATOR GIRLS IN BONDAGE in three short years following his brief but snazzy reign with the Cockettes(1970-1972). He continues to keep thespirit alive to this day with contributions to critically acclaimed recent exhibitions and events at: Envoy Gallery, NYC, Giorgi Gallery, Berkeley, CA, Dumbo Arts Center, Brooklyn NY, HOWL Festival, NYC, UKS Galleri in Oslo, Norway, The Gender-Bender Festival in Bologna, Italy, SFMOMA, SomArts, The Center for Sex & Culture, the National Queer Arts Festival in San Francisco, the Denver Museum of Contemporary Art, TATE  Liverpool and the New York Public Library of Performing Arts at Lincoln Center among many others.

 

Recent acting roles include stage productions of MARAT SADE, Brava Theater, TINSEL TARTS IN A HOT COMA and currently appearing in the Thrillpeddlers revival of the Cockettes 1970 opus; PEARLS OVER SHANGHAI reprising his original role as Madame Gin-Sling. In addition to hosting THE BLUE HOUR, a live variety show since 2009 at the Hypnodrome in SF, he also has appeared and co-produced in some cases a number of independent films including; ELEVATOR GIRLS IN BONDAGE, UNCLE BOB, TRIP BACK FORWARD, THE COCKETTES, THE GLITTER EMERGENCY, REVOLUTIONARY SEX, TIP-TOE PAST THE WITCH and RUMINATIONS. Rumi currently resides in Oakland, CA and enjoys touring NYC each April and October since 2007.

 

Special Guests:

Agosto Machado

Agosto Machado

 

Joe E. Jeffreys

Joe E. Jeffreys

 

Jarvis

Jarvis Earnshaw

 

Mark Galamco

Mark Galamco

 

Max Steele

Max Steele

 

Rachel Mason

Rachel Mason 

 

 

 

 

 

Start: April 17, 2014 7:00 PM
End: April 17, 2014 11:00 PM
Venue: Bureau of General Services–Queer Division
Phone: 646 457 0859
Address:
83A Hester St., New York, NY, 10002, United States