What Should We Do After "I Do?" Full Program

The program for our fall event, What Should WE Do After "I Do" | Conversations On The Challenges That Remain For The LGBTQ Community is ready- see below for details!


Friday, September 25
(Location TBA)

For more information, and registration when it is available see the event home page  


7:30 – 9:00 PM:         PANEL DISCUSSION

Drama Queens and Drama Kings: A Conversation on Recent LGBTQ Theater. Panel discussion on the past, present, and future of LGBTQ theater as seen by playwrights, theater directors, and drama critics.

Part of ART of Human Rights Series co-sponsored by the American Repertory Theatre and Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

Saturday, September 26
(Northwest Labs Building, 52 Oxford Street)

9:30 – 9:45 AM          WELCOME

9:45 – 11:00 AM        OPENING PLENARY SESSION

The LGBTQ Community: Does Such A Place Still Exist? Our community was “built” as a space in which LGBTQ people could feel safe from the domination of the “straight” world, but where is that community now? Is there a single community or just a collection of disconnected L and G (and T?) neighborhoods, or are we instead disappearing into the larger society? How do our neighborhoods connect with others organized around race, class, gender, etc.? Have our physical communities been replaced by virtual communities? And how do the answers to these question impact “community development” in the future?

11:15 AM –

A.      The Kids Are Not All Right: LGBTQ Youth Falling Through the Cracks. Why is it that LGBTQ teens and young adults face significantly higher rates of homelessness, suicide, eating disorders, and victimization than their cisgender counterparts? How can the child welfare system, working with an increasing number of LGBTQ mentors, help queer youth not fall through the cracks? And how are many of the most “at risk” LGBTQ youths showing surprising resilience?

 B.      Archive Fever: Preserving Our Story. What is the place of archives in preserving our history and how are scholars, educators, and filmmakers mining those materials to tell our story? What impact has the closing of LGBTQ bookstores/presses had on the preservation of LGBTQ heritage? How is Harvard assembling a diverse collection of LGBTQ materials to support researchers both now and in the future, most notably its support of the ACT-UP Oral History Project? And how can we advocate for/support the collection of such materials?

C.    Physician, Heal Thyself: New Paths in LGBTQ Medicine. How has the medical profession become more responsive to the LGBTQ community and its varied health needs, notably through increased advocacy for women’s and trans* health issues? How have medical schools improved training for medical practitioners in how to deal with LGBTQ patients, due in large part to the increase in LGBTQ representation in their faculties and student bodies? How are Harvard’s teaching hospitals and university health services doing in addressing such matters?

D.    What’s Love Got To Do With It?: Sexual Ethics in the Age of Truvada. How has the combination of increased use of online “dating” apps and widespread prescribing of the miracle drug, Truvada, led to a significant rise in sexual activity (or at least the perception of the same) among gay men reminiscent of the “go-go days” or the late 70s/early 80s? And what do those who lived through “the gay plague” have to say about that? At the same time, what impact does—or should—broader acceptance of gay marriage have on the ethics of “open” committed relationships (i.e., when should you erase Grindr)?

E.    Minding Our Elders: The Greying of the LGBTQ Community. How do we care for the first generation of broadly “out” LGBTQ people who lack (or are estranged from) biological families to support them? Do LGBTQ people need to go back into the closet to function within the elder-care system? And how can we ensure that elder services providers (including home care aides) are trained to provide nondiscriminatory and culturally-competent care to LGBTQ elders?

F.    Whose Lives Matter?: LGBTQ and Intersectional Justice. Does the LGBTQ community adequately support the diversity of its members? Is the leadership of (and priorities promoted by) the most visible LGBTQ organizations far too white/too male/too affluent? How can the LGBTQ community join with other groups in their struggles for equity and social justice? And what can LGBTQ activists learn from the work around #BlackLivesMatter to engage a broader cross-section of people?

G.   Modern Family: The Shifting Landscape of LGBTQ Parenting. How have media culture and mainstream acceptance changed public perceptions on what constitutes a family and how has the LGBTQ community responded? What ongoing challenges do would-be LGBTQ parents face regarding adoption (including second-parent adoption), surrogacy, etc.? Is it really possible to raise families with parents who are in open relationships? And what are the experiences of Harvard students who are children of same-sex couples?

12:45 – 2:15 PM        LUNCH


A.      You’ve Got To Be Carefully Taught: Here and Queer in Our Schools. Are public schools adequately addressing the needs of their LGBTQ students? How are queer voices being brought into the classroom through curriculum and out teachers? How are school systems responding to the particular needs of trans* kids? And how have school sports provided many LGBTQ students with a positive outlet?

B.    Does God Love the Gays?: Religion and LGBTQ Equality. What role do different religious institutions play in promoting and protesting anti-LGBTQ prejudice? How have several “megachurches” changed their policies towards LGBTQ parishioners and how can their views be shared more broadly? Do many of the churches that once led the fight to recognize same-sex marriage now expect their LGBTQ members (and clergy) to get married? And how have younger people of faith responded to the call for acceptance of LGBTQ equality, particularly among Harvard students?

 C.      Queering Human Rights: Confronting Anti-LGBTQ Violence Worldwide. How does U.S. foreign policy and work by various NGO’s both help and hinder the securing of LGBTQ human rights worldwide? How can we support LGBTQ activism without imposing first-world values, which privilege the individual and the expression of sexual identity, with core cultural values in other parts of the world? Should foreign aid be tied to recognition of LGBTQ rights, as befits “civilized” nations?  How should the specter of increased hardship for LGBTQ asylum seekers and undocumented individuals affect immigration policy?

D.    DON’T Call Me Caitlyn: How is Trans* Challenging Everything? How is the recent increase in attention on the trans* community challenging the priorities of other groups within the LGBTQ community and the larger society? What impact is trans*/gender fluidity having on the women’s/feminist movement? Have trans* individuals finally got their place at the table in setting the direction of LGBTQ politics?

E.    Equal Protection: Not Just for Marriage Anymore. With marriage equality now (arguably) the law of the land, what has changed and not changed? In the court of public opinion, will SCOTUS’s gay marriage decision lead to political backlash, particularly in the 2016 elections? And does the way SCOTUS analyzed the issues in Obergefell (persuaded by the equal protection arguments raised by plaintiffs’ counsel) signal a new direction to be taken in future cases involving LGBTQ rights?

F.    Is Coming Out Good for Business?: The Corporate LGBTQ Agenda. Should businesses use their economic leverage to push for more LGBTQ-friendly policies? Is corporate commitment to support LGBTQ issues too often “pink washing” where businesses fail to address inequality in their own workplaces? How are LGBTQ employees faring in smaller businesses, particularly contractors and suppliers, which lie below the radar of the HRC Corporate Equality Index? Is the government “walking the walk” to back its talk on protecting LGBTQ workers?

G.   Fight Back: ACT UP and the Future of Queer Activism. What is the legacy of ACT UP? Did it produce a new paradigm for political action or was it instead largely a product of a particular moment in time? And how can its onetime members (together with other past and present LGBTQ activists) inspire a future generation of Harvard students and alumni to join in the next stage of the fight?

4:00 – 5:30 PM           CLOSING PLENARY SESSION

Suiting Up for the Fight: What Does 2016 Mean for the LGBTQ Community? Is the LGBTQ movement in political trouble? With the marriage issue having been (largely) resolved, what is left for us to rally around? What explains the failure to elevate LGBTQ issues in 2014 midterms and what is in store for 2016? Should our goal be to elect LGBTQ politicians or to put an LGBTQ agenda on the table—or both?

5:30 – 5:45 PM           CLOSING

5:45 – 7:30 PM           RECEPTION

7:30 – 10:00 PM        DINNER ON OWN


Sunday, September 27
(Holden Chapel Harvard Yard)

10:00 – 11:30 AM        HGSC TOWN MEETING