Charles Francis on LGBTQ Archive Activism

AHR author Charles Francis speaks about his October 2019 issue article “Freedom Summer ‘Homos’: An Archive Story.” Francis is president of the Mattachine Society of Washington, D.C., an LGBTQ history society that partners with pro bono legal counsel McDermott Will & Emery to undertake archival research that brings to light hidden and suppressed aspects of LGBTQ political history in order to educate the legal community, community leaders, and the media—work the society conceives of as “archive activism.” Francis spoke about his article with AHR editor Alex Lichtenstein and Florida International University historian of queer history Julio Capó Jr.

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AHR Interview presents brief discussions with historians whose work has appeared in the American Historical Review, the official publication of the American Historical Association. Sometimes the interview accompanies an article or a featured review in a current or recent issue; other times it will feature a scholar who has recently been in the news, but whose work appeared in the journal in the past. These accessible and user-friendly podcasts highlight historical scholarship of wide interest and enormous import for issues of the day.