|ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT
Collecting for the collection
By Carey Weinberg
In the wake of budgetary constraints, valuable resources specific to groups traditionally under-represented are hard to come by. The Student 'Queer Collection' is one such existing resource.
On Saturday, The Commission for Gay/Lesbian and Bi-sexual Issues, uwOUT! and The Women's Issues Network are presenting a fund-raiser to support queer resources. Proceeds from the evening's festivities are going towards expanding the collection which is presently weighted in favour of gay literature. "Money will be spent on queer women's minority groups including literature specific to transgendered and disabled queer culture," says GLBI commissioner Madeleine Wells. "These are groups whose voices are rarely heard."
It's really important for these resources to be available to the community as these resources are rare it's equally as important that people have an opportunity to read about themselves," explains Wells.
These highly specific resources may effectively reduce the sense of isolation felt by under-represented members of the community. These books provide voices for 'minorities within a minority,' Wells says, "which enables self-acceptance and empowerment."
The collection currently consists of transgendered, lesbian, gay and bi-sexual issues. Materials addressing the politics of SM (formerly known as S and M) are also included, as well as "anything from coming out issues to radical politics, fiction," and says Wells, safe-sex info and 'how-to' books."
Saturday's event is meant to bring both financial resources and awareness to the community that such a collection exists. The evening also serves to bring together the strengths of the three groups which include both straight and queer members of the community.
Singer/songwriter Steph Marshall is the headliner for the event. She is a recent Western graduate who was formerly a member of uwOUT! and Alpha Gamma Delta. Lesbian feminist issues are the main thrust of her music. After her performance, a dance is scheduled to round off the evening.
The event takes place at SINNZ on Saturday at 10 p.m.. Tickets are on a sliding scale $1-$5, of which all proceeds go towards balancing the present collection. Both queer and queer-positive folk are welcome.