ARCHIVES, LIBRARIES, MUSEUMS AND SPECIAL COLLECTIONS: AN INTERNATIONAL LGBTIQ+ CONFERENCE
What does ‘queering memory’ mean under the political, social and cultural conditions of the present? How the diversity of queer histories can be made visible in these digitized times? ALMS 2019 Berlin will explore the potentials of generating publicities for queer archives, libraries, museums and special collections, with a special focus on the arts and artistic interventions.
ALMS is a series of international conferences focused on public, private, academic, and grassroots archives collecting and preserving materials of all types from LGBTIQ+ communities. Its mission is to ensure that our history continues to be preserved and shared. The series was initiated in 2006 in Minnesota and the last two conferences took place in Amsterdam in 2012 and in London in 2016. These conferences provide an opportunity for archivists, activists and scholars from around the world to gather, share their stories and discuss the issues around documenting LGBTIQ+ lives. ALMS is an exceptional event as it offers the encouraging experience of being part of an international network overcoming borders and on track for the future.
ALMS 2019 Berlin also commemorates the 100th anniversary of the world’s first queer archive, library, museum and special collection. In 1919 Magnus Hirschfeld opened the Institut für Sexualwissenschaft(Institute for Sex Research) which was destroyed by the Nazis in 1933. This institute was located at the very place where the Haus der Kulturen der Welt stands today, and where ALMS Berlin will convene.
We hope that many archivists, activist, scholars and artists from all over the world working in queer archives, libraries, special collections and museums, researching the queer past or generally interested in queer history will join us in Berlin to discuss the current challenges and potentials of queering memory.
A call for papers inviting individuals and organizations to submit contributions or to present their archive, library, museum and/or special collection will be published shortly. We would especially like to encourage artists working with LGBTIQ+ archival materials to take part.
Date: Thursday 27 June to Saturday 29 June 2019
Place: Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin (Germany)
Hosted by: Magnus-Hirschfeld-Gesellschaft in partnership with Feministisches Archiv FFBIZ, Forschungsstelle Kulturgeschichte der Sexualität at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, Initiative Queer Nations, Lili-Elbe-Archiv, Schwules Museum, and Spinnboden Lesbenarchiv.
Sponsored by: Hauptstadtkulturfonds, Stiftung Deutsche Klassenlotterie Berlin, Bundesstiftung Magnus Hirschfeld
Inquiries should be addressed via email to Andreas Pretzel or Esra Paul Afken for the ALMS 2019 organising team: email@example.com
– OPEN NOW UNTIL 15 JANUARY 2019
What does “queering memory” mean under the political, social and cultural conditions of the present? How can the diversity of queer histories be made visible in these digitized times?
ALMS 2019 Berlin will explore the potential for generating publicities for queer archives, libraries, museums and special collections, with a special focus on the arts and artistic interventions. We use the word “queer” to include both same-sex or bi-sexuality and histories of trans identity and gender diversity.
ALMS 2019 invites people from all over the world working in queer archives, libraries, special collections and museums, researching the queer past or generally interested in queer history.
Archivists, librarians, museum staff and custodians of special collections from public, private, academic and grassroots institutions or organizations are all highly welcome. Artists and
scholars working on any aspect of the queer past, in any region of the world, are encouraged to apply.
Main Topics & Key Issues
1. Queering Memory and Rewriting History
2. Collecting Queer Art and Artistic Perspectives on Queer History
3. Archives and Libraries as Armories against Homo- and Transphobia
4. Collecting, Connecting & Documenting in the Digital Age
5. Queering Public History and Education in Museums
Themes, streams and panels could include (but are not limited to)
• Exploring and diversifying collections through intersectional and postcolonial perspectives
• Adding LGBTIQ+ history or queering memory: how to employ these different strategies?
• Narratives, desiderata and avoiding marginalization — best practices for collections
• Libraries as archives of literary canons in past and present
• Global history, national histories, local stories & events — potentials of transnational
• Including queer migrants into queer museums and educational projects
• Potentials of queer art in archives and museums
• Queering mainstream museums: exploring and visualizing queer art in public collections
• Exploring queer archives for contributions of artists and empowering artworks to the
history of the LGBTIQ+ emancipation movement
• Artistic interventions using archival materials
• Presentation of queer art collections
• Embarrassed, excited or amused? How to exhibit erotic arts and queer artefacts?
• Secret collections: dealing with pornographic deliverances
• Collector’s items — the role of art, junk and stuff in collections for queer history and
• Archives as arsenals of past protest and current publicity and activist strategies
• Staying in touch: archives and activism
• Potentials of (trans-)national networks and solidarity between LGBTIQ+ archives, libraries
• International pilot projects for digitizing and networking queer history and culture
• Collecting and preserving digital artefacts — best practice collecting for websites,
emails, digital documents & pictures
• Archiving and using queer oral histories between high standards and everyday
• Digitalizing, data protection and copyright laws — the specificities and limits of
international networking und publication
• Collecting separately and exhibiting cooperatively — telling queer history on the basis of
separate LGBTIQ+ archives and collections
• Going public & learning online — best practice projects for education websites, tour
guides, online exhibitions, etc.
• Collecting tears & encouragements — ways of remembering persecution by telling stories
of oppression and cruelty, protest and emancipation, love and passion
• Bringing queer history to the schools
• Bringing young people into queer ALMS
There will also be panels dedicated to showcasing new and already established archives,
libraries, museums & special collections. In addition, there will be opportunities to have
information stands and/or poster presentations for your organization.
Papers should be limited to 15—20 minutes in length. Paper proposals should consist of a single Word document including:
– Title of paper
– Name of presenter (and institutional affiliation, if applicable)
– Paper abstract (300 words max.)
– A short biographical statement with contact information
All proposals should be submitted by January 15, 2019 to
The ALMS 2019 program committee will make decisions and send notifications to all applicants in February 2019.
You can download the CfP here.