About Do It In the Dark!

Please note: this event will take place in Room 328 at Lindley Hall.

Harrison Apple from the Pittsburgh Queer History Project comes to Indiana University to share their work as an after-hours nightclub archivist and oral historian. Following many years of discomfort with the extractive and repetitive demands of archival custodian techniques, Apple created a monthly screening series paying their narrators and donors to share an intimate experience with a broader eager audience. At its core, the series fosters a social bond that comes from teaching one another how to watch a tape as friends. The screening series, now known as MS 89, brings performers, media makers, and activists (back) into the limelight as they introduce themselves and the community created videos we watch. Pageants, Cable Access features, and Benefit shows mediate friendships between queer Pittsburghers who, for their own and collective reasons, are looking for ways to re-enter communities of desire and care, even if just for one night in the dark. 

Harrison Apple, PhD (they/them/theirs), is the founding co-director of the Pittsburgh Queer History Project as well as the Associate Director of the Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry at Carnegie Mellon University. They received their doctorate in Gender and Women's Studies with a minor in Information from the University of Arizona. Their research focuses on intersecting forces of identity and community formation among primarily working-class people in Pittsburgh between the 1950s and 1990s. Specifically, Apple became a community archivist to an evolving social world that began in gay after-hours discos disguised as social clubs. Their scholarship has been published in Transgender Studies Quarterly and Archivaria, and are also available without paywall restrictions on the Pittsburgh Queer History Project website.

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