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BGSQD: Precocious Queer Politics: Sodomy Law Reform in Early 19th c. Britain (In-Person only)

June 1, 2022, 7:00 pm-8:30 pm

The first parliamentary debates over the immorality of the death penalty for sodomy occurred in Britain in the early nineteenth century, as part of a fragmented and largely forgotten political effort to lessen the penalties for sex between men. This talk explains how a form of queer politics was possible before modern homosexual identity, recounting the new discoveries published in “Beyond the Law”: The Politics Ending the Death Penalty for Sodomy in Britain (Temple University Press, 2021). Jeffrey Weeks, author of the first landmark works of LGBTQ history for nineteenth century Britain, has called this research “a triumph of historical detective work… [that] is genuinely breaking new ground.” Join the author, Charles Upchurch, and eminent historian of LGBTQ history, Jonathan Ned Katz, for an illustrated presentation and discussion of this new research. For more information, please visit


June 1, 2022
7:00 pm-8:30 pm
Event Category:


Virtual or In Person