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Bluestockings Bookstore: Empowering Queer & Activist Communities
October 21, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Founded in 1999, Bluestockings Bookstore has served for many years as a cultural hub, activist network, and vibrant community space on the Lower East Side of Manhattan. Entirely all-volunteer run, there are 80+ volunteers, a rotating weekly schedule, and a worker’s collective at the decision-making core. Home to over 300 events/year, Bluestockings offers poetry open-mics, letter writing to prisoners, zine-making workshops, book launches, reading clubs. Panelists Malav Kanuga, Emiliano Lemus, and Joan Dark will share from their personal experiences as former and current members of the Bluestockings collective, offering an in-depth exploration of the space and its pivotal role for queer, transgender, and gender non-conforming individuals. This event is additionally co-sponsored by CLAGS: The Center for LGBTQ Studies and the Mina Rees Library at The Graduate Center, City University of New York.
Emiliano Lemus (AKA Lee Naught) is a medical student in the UC Berkeley-UCSF Joint Medical Program, health disparities researcher, clinical herbalist, and trainer on transgender-affirming healthcare. They are a former collective member of Bluestockings Bookstore, where they coordinated events and helped establish the Safer Space Policy. Beyond Bluestockings, Emiliano has spent 15 years working as a community organizer, workshop facilitator, and educator, on topics including sexuality, sexual health, and LGBTQ and transgender-affirming healthcare. After completing Family Medicine residency, Emiliano hopes to translate their experiences at Bluestockings and other community spaces into establishing an LGBTQ and BIPOC commuinity center and integrative family health center. Emiliano is trans, proudly Chicano and Indigenous, a parent to five chickens and a poodle. They miss NYC, but they love living in Oakland.
Malav Kanuga is a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Media, Inequality and Change Center at the University of Pennsylvania. A longstanding participant in several movement-based media projects. Malav is a cooperative member of Making Worlds Bookstore and Social Center in West Philadelphia, and also founding editor and publisher of Common Notions Press.
Mr. Elvis Bakaitis (Moderator) is currently the Interim Head of Reference at The Graduate Center’s Mina Rees Library. They are proud to serve on the University LGBTQ Council; the board of CLAGS: The Center for LGBTQ Studies [clags.org]; and LACUNY Diversity & Multicultural Roundtable. Bakaitis holds an MLIS from Queens College and Certificate in Geriatric Care Management from the Brookdale Center for Healthy Aging [brookdale.org] at Hunter College. They are committed to researching and sharing out LGBTQ histories, and excited to be a 2022 Visiting Scholar at the University of Victoria’s Transgender Archives [uvic.ca].