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University of Iowa News Release

Feb. 16, 2004

Historian To Speak On Civil Rights, Gay Marriage Feb. 18, 19 At UI

A leading scholar of American social and sexual history will visit the University of Iowa Feb. 18 to 20 as an Ida Cordelia Beam Distinguished Visiting Professor. John D'Emilio, professor of history and of gender and women's studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago, will give two public lectures while he is on campus.

On Wednesday, Feb. 18, he will speak about "Lost Prophet: The Life and Times of Bayard Rustin," at 4:30 p.m. in Room 140, Schaeffer Hall. D'Emilio's most recent book was the 2003 biography of Bayard Rustin, an American civil rights leader and Gandhian activist.

On Thursday, Feb. 19, D'Emilio will speak on "Will the Courts Make Us Free? The Lawrence Decision and the Campaign for Same-Sex Marriage" at 7:30 p.m. in Lecture Room 2, Van Allen Hall.

D'Emilio's research interests include gay and lesbian studies, the history of sexuality, social movements and U.S. history after 1945. His book "Intimate Matters: A History of Sexuality in America," co-written with Estelle Freedman in 1997, was the first full-length study of the history of sexuality in America, from colonial times to today. It was cited in the recent Supreme Court decision in Lawrence vs. Texas, which declared sodomy laws unconstitutional.

D'Emilio's other books include "Sexual Politics, Sexual Communities - The Making of a Homosexual Minority in the United States, 1940-1970," "Making Trouble: Essays on Gay History, Politics, and the University," and "Creating Change: Sexuality, Public Policy, and Civil Rights," "The World Turned: Essays on Gay History, Politics, and Culture," which won the Lambda Literary Award in 2003.

His visit to the UI is co-sponsored by the Division of Interdisciplinary Studies, sexuality studies program, the departments of women's studies department, American studies, history, and African-American world studies, all in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, and the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies Seminar on Sexuality, Economics, and Politics.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires an accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact the sexuality studies program in advance at 319-335-3821.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

CONTACTS: Media: Mary Geraghty Kenyon, 319-384-0011,; Program: Rob Latham,