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One of the program's strengths is archival studies. A number of faculty members involved in GSWS use archives regularly in their scholarship and teaching, and there are GSWS courses that offer great opportunities for students to explore physical and digital archives and learn about feminist and LGBTQ archival methods.
Pitt's LGBTQ Archival Education Project
A joint project of GSWS and the University Library System in support of LGBTQ archives is funded by an Innovation in Education grant. Beginning in summer 2020, the Pitt LGBTQ Archival Education Project is involving Pitt undergraduates in the creation of a discovery tool to identify online LGBTQ archives from the greater Pittsburgh area. The project is co-directed by GSWS faculty member Dr. Julie Beaulieu, ULS archivist David Grinnell, and ULS librarian Robin Kear, who is GSWS's liaison librarian and a member of the program's Steering Committee. The project will be hosted by Pitt but provide open access to archival holdings at multiple institutions, on the model of the Historic Pittsburgh project (https://historicpittsburgh.org). Students in Dr. Beaulieu's fall 2020 seminar, "Gender and Sexuality in the Archives," and student interns from summer 2020 onward were involved in working in the archival materials and creating a LibGuide as well as other resources that would be helpful to instructors and students drawing on these resources, and students continue to contribute to this ongoing project.
Summer 2020 GSWS Research Fellows
In support of the Pitt LGBTQ Archival Education Project, GSWS funded Research Fellowships in Summer 2020 for students working under the guidance of Dr. Julie Beaulieu.
Kathryn Haynes explored what it means to be a critical archivist and how we can use archives to imagine queer futures.
Olivia Mania focused on documenting the legal and economic process of gentrification in Pittsburgh as it has involved and impacted the city's LGBTQ community.
Sofia Sparks worked on mapping past and present queer spaces around Pittsburgh, using practices of critical cartography and geolocation to explore the history of Pittsburgh's queer communities.
Thomas Troyan worked with archives to learn about queer pasts in the service of imagining queer futures.
Chloe Young paid special attention to the theoretical foundations of gentrification and its effects on our thinking about time and space of cities. This fall, she worked with Dr. Frank Karioris on their Intro to GSWS class to fully integrate archival materials into the curriculum. She will continue this work and TA for this class in the spring.
Philippa Zang's work for the LGBTQ Archival Education Project is designed to explore the ways that, in the face of grief and constraint, trans and queer communities in Pittsburgh have cultivated fabrics of mutual aid, artistry, joy, and humor. This work is part of their commitment to uncovering and promoting intergenerational networks of care and resistance in the LGBTQIA+ community.