New Exhibit: Queering Duke History: Understanding the LGBTQ Experience at Duke and Beyond

Queering Duke History Exhibit LogoOn exhibit August 14 – December 14, 2014
Perkins Library Gallery, Duke West Campus (Click for map)
Public Hours: Monday-Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 pm; Saturday, 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.; Sunday, 10:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.

Hours may vary before the start of the fall semester, and on holidays. Please check our posted library hours for the most up-to-date information.

This exhibition is a part of a semester-long commemoration of LGBTQ history at Duke, including other exhibits and events. More details are available on the Queering Duke History website.


About the Exhibit

Towerview Magazine, December 2003
Towerview Magazine, December 2003

A new exhibit in Perkins Library highlights the major points of struggle and triumph in Duke’s LGBTQ history over the past 50 years. The exhibit begins with the earliest records of LGBTQ activity on campus—the dark days of arrest and expulsions—and culminates with the thriving and active queer community seen at Duke today. This transition was neither quick nor linear. LGBTQ individuals on Duke’s campus faced major setbacks in every one of the last five decades.

The exhibit also functions as a timeline, marching the observer decade-by-decade in order to view every artifact within the greater context of Duke’s queer struggle. On display are arrest records for “homosexuality” in the 1960s, early 1970s-era queer publications, the official “dechartering” of the gay and lesbian alliance in the 1980s, the establishment of the LGB center during the 1990s, same-sex unions permitted in Duke Chapel at the start of the new millennium, and finally a reflection of the current vibrancy of Duke’s LGBTQ community.

The exhibit was curated by Duke alumnus Denzell Faison (T’14), with special thanks to co-advisors Dr. Janie Long, former director of Duke’s Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity, and Professor Raymond Gavins, Duke Department of History. Thanks also to the Duke University Archives, the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation, the Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity, Blue Devils United, and the Sallie Bingham Center for Women’s History & Culture for their institutional support and contributed resources.

For more information, visit the exhibit website.

Scene from the first Coming Out Day at Duke, 2007
Scene from the first Coming Out Day at Duke, 2007


Commemorative Exhibit Opening Event and Remarks: Please Join Us!

Date: Thursday, September 25
Time: 4:30 – 6:30 p.m. (Program begins at 5:15 p.m.)
Location: von der Heyden Pavilion, Perkins Library
Remarks by: Exhibit curator Denzell Faison (T’14), former director of the Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity Dr. Janie Long, and Duke University President Richard H. Brodhead.

Free and open to the public.



One thought on “New Exhibit: Queering Duke History: Understanding the LGBTQ Experience at Duke and Beyond”

  1. I have a poster that depicts a purple rhino with a red heart that appeared on the Duke campus as an announcement in the 1970s. The inscription is, “Don’t Travel Alone— Duke Gay Alliance, Sunday, 15 September, 7 PM East Campus Center. All gay brothers & sisters welcome.” I believe the year is 9174.

    If you would like to have it I will send it to you the next time I am in Durham. I am a retired professor of English who now lives in Naples, FK,and was very active in the founding of the “DGA”.

    In the meantime, In will be happy to send you a scanned image of the poster as an attached file if you will tell me how to do that.

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