October 31 – From Drowning to Celebration: Forty years of Gay Liberation

The Don Dunstan Foundation and Oxfam Australia present

Professor Dennis Altman AM FASSA

From Drowning to Celebration: Forty years of Gay Liberation

A Human Rights Oration

Dennis Altman is a writer and academic who first came to attention with the publication of his book Homosexual: Oppression & Liberation in 1972. This book was the first serious analysis to emerge from the gay liberation movement, and was published in eight countries.

The same year marked a dark period in the history of the city of Adelaide but also a turning point in legislation toward the decriminalisation of homosexuality. University of Adelaide law lecturer and gay man, Dr George Duncan, drowned in the River Torrens. Foul play was suspected and reports implicating police emerged. Witnesses were reluctant to come forward and Dr Duncan’s assailants were never convicted.

The outrage spawned from this act of murder forged an alliance between activists, civil libertarians and politicians, and created legal and social history in Australia. Murray Hill, a Liberal Party member of the Upper House of parliament, introduced a private member’s bill to amend the existing legislation under which homosexuality was illegal. The bill was enacted in October 1972, and whilst it did not decriminalise homosexuality, it allowed the right to a defence against prosecution. Debate continued over the following three years. Full decriminalisation and legal equality for homosexuals occurred under the Dunstan Government in 1975.

Join us to hear Professor Dennis Altman speak about gay liberation over the past forty years and current issues.

Date: Wednesday 31 October, 2012 
Time: 7:00pm
Venue: Napier Theatre 102, Napier Building, North Tce, University of Adelaide (please note new venue, was previously Elder Hall)
Tickets: $35 general, $15 concession/DDF subscriber, FREE for Uni Students (bookings required)


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