I attended the Spectrum launch event, the new network for LGBT staff at the London School of Economics, King’s and UCL. I had a great time meeting new people and listened to an inspiring and resonating talk by Professor Jeffrey Weeks (you can just make him out in the image above), an original member of the Gay Liberation Front (GLF) and the Gay Left collective.
Jeffrey stated there were four main strands to the development of the LGBT struggle for liberation, I didn’t manage to write down the fourth because of the pace of his talking, but the first three were: IDENTITY, WIDER BELONGING and AGENCY of which he said was a critical acheivement in a wider sense, it was US doing it for OURSELVES (a reminder of Annie Lennox singing Sister’s are doing it for themselves, standing on their own two feet and ringing on their own bells’. Jeffrey’s stated since the 1970s there has been a move away from IDENTITY to RELATIONSHIP politics, with the advent of civil partnerships, parenting rights coming to the fore.
It was inspiring to listen to Jeffrey especially as he was part of the original Gay Liberation Front meetings at the LSE in October 1970. He said the best metaphor he could find was ‘from acorns large Oak trees grow’ casting a large shadow from which we can flourish. The lesson from the GLF cause was to assert our basic humanity and solidarity, it started at the LSE.