I have several research projects on the go. My primary project, described below, involves the development and analysis of an archive of lgbtq oral histories in Lethbridge, Alberta. I am also a member of the Calgary research team for the newly expanded Divided Cities project (findings from the first SSHRC-funded project can be read here: http://neighbourhoodchange.ca/). While holding the RWW Chair, I will be writing about participatory urbanism, social inclusion and feminist praxis.
The lives of (sexual) others: Social difference and urban change in Lethbridge, Alberta
This research examines the changing social geographies of lgbtq people in and around the Lethbridge region.
The project combines oral history collection and analysis with examination of lgbtq socio-spatial praxis: including the development of sexual identity, the function of community, and the material consequences of visibility and difference for lgbtq people in an increasingly heterogeneous city, and in a “post-gay marriage” historical moment in Canada. Further, it explores the relationship between the discourses of social difference and the materialities of urban change in a region that has experienced dramatic demographic change but retains a taken-for-granted geography of political and social conservatism.
The project also aims to build a community archive of queer life stories. A portion of the archive will be accessible via the project’s website, http://www.queerlethbridge.com, which is currently under development. Full transcripts and audio interviews of public participants will ultimately be maintained at the Sir Alexander Galt Museum and Archives in Lethbridge, Alberta.
This project is funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council and the University of Lethbridge. It has also been supported by the Centre for Feminist Research at York University, where I was in residence during the 2012 spring semester.