R Conrad

Pervers/Cite: Montreal's Answer to Corporate Pride

Filed By R Conrad | July 27, 2011 1:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Living, Politics
Tags: anti-capitalist, Montreal, Pride Festival, Radical

pc_poster_final.jpg Pervers/Cité, Montréal's collaboratively organized summer festival that aims to make links across social justice groups, queer communities, and radical visions of pride, is set to take place this summer from August 4 to 14. This celebration of collectivity and solidarity within the queer and trans community seeks something beyond beer sales, target marketing, and consumer culture in which we can be proud.

"We wanted to put together a series that had not only parties, but also reintroduced the politics into 'Pride' to actively engage people in a discussion about issues in our communities. You don't need corporate sponsors for that, and you don't need exorbitant entrance fees." Said Octavia, one of this year's organizers.

This year's festival has expanded its geography of participation with contributions from New York City, Toronto, and Portland, Oregon as well as the consistently impressive talent from the city of Montréal itself. Some notable events include two queer history walking tours, a workshop for/about queer sex workers hosted by none other than Stella, and an all day queer book fair. There will also be a special edition of the regular monthly party Meow Mix featuring Rae Spoon, Ledges Blast, Peaches Lepage, 2fik, Alex Cafarelli, NO/HO/MO and DJ Like the Wolf, which will be a fundraiser for Project10, an organization that works to promote the personal, social, sexual, and mental wellbeing of queer youth and young adults 14-25.

The festival's two days of workshops include a Prisonner Correspondence Project & ASTTeQ community discussion on hate crime legislation and safety priorities, a panel on Montréal vogue troupe history on Queer Corp (CKUT) and a talk by queer Indian organizer Ponni Arasu on gay rights and the NGO-ization of human rights in South Asia.

Among many of the film screenings will be an archival film collage of media coverage and home movie footage of Montréal's own ACT UP chapter (1991-1993). Along with these events, the twelve-day Pervers/Cité festival will also include numerous radical nights of music, dancing and debaucherous resistance.

Steven Gordon, a participant in last year's events, is drawn by the free/pay-what-you-can principle underlying all of the events: "Eighty-five dollars for a party? I'm really not that kind of proud!"

In a climate of corporatized gay agendas and whitewashed homogeneity among queers, Pervers/Cité provides a critical and accessible schedule of activities, designed to bring back the radical underpinnings to the pride movement. For more information or to check out the full schedule of events go to their Facebook event page or website.

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