Keynote by Bettina Aptheker: "Queer Dialectics/Feminist Interventions: Harry Hay and the Quest for a Revolutionary Politics."
Bettina Aptheker is Professor of Feminist Studies at University of California, Santa Cruz. She is the author of five books including Woman's Legacy: Essays on Race, Sex and Class in American History; Tapestries of Life: Women's Work, Women's Consciousness and the Meaning of Daily Life; and Intimate Politics: How I Grew Up Red, Fought for Free Speech and Became a Feminist Rebel. Her current research is on queering the history of the Communist Left in the United States.

Professor Aptheker grew up in the milieu of the Communist Party USA. Her mother was a union organizer and her father a Marxist historian. Her first job was in the home of W.E.B. Du Bois and in 1964 she was a leader in the Berkeley Free Speech Movement. After completing her master's degree at San Jose State University, she taught African-American and Women's Studies there. In the early 1980s, she completed her doctorate at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Scene from Tony Kushner’s
Scenes from Tony Kushner’s Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to the Scriptures

When Tony Kushner’s I-Ho (for short) opened at the Public Theater in New York in the spring of 2011 – having premiered in 2009 in Minneapolis – New York audiences rushed to see what Kushner had created. He offered what the New York Times deemed a “densely textured portrait of a Brooklyn family” brought together to confront the imminent suicide of its patriarch, a former Communist and labor leader.

Kushner has described the play as a “family drama,” somewhere in the lineage of Eugene O’Neill and Arthur Miller, though in this family one adult child is a lesbian with an ex-husband, another a gay man with a long-term partner and a favorite hustler, and there is a sister who is a former nun and Maoist. Together they wrestle with their father’s and their own losses of faith. “I don’t know how to get out of the morass, either,” Kushner has said in reference to the play. “I just know that there’s a great deal of value in not running away from it. That’s why we made this weird activity” – meaning, theater. “So we could find social occasions to encounter these things.”

Speakers

Bettina Aptheker
Bettina Aptheker is Professor, Feminist Studies, University of California, Santa Cruz. Her most recent book is Intimate Politics: How I Grew Up Red, Fought for Free Speech and Became a Feminist Rebel (2006). Her current research focuses on queering the history of the Communist Left in the United States.

Friday September 28, 2012 7:00pm - 9:30pm
GC Proshansky Auditorium (CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Ave, New York NY)
Keynote  Performance

Loading more stuff…

Hmm…it looks like things are taking a while to load. Try again?

Loading videos…