Mission and History


The Queer Film Series is an academically-oriented film series that, through education, entertainment and outreach, seeks to increase campus and community awareness of the histories, lives, and cultures of LGBTQI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning, and intersex) persons. We seek to further university goals for diversity by using high-quality LGBTQI-themed cinema to promote understanding and acceptance of the many ways people experience and live out their gender identity and sexuality; highlight the intersections of sex, gender and sexuality with other categories such as race and class; and to provide a venue to discuss, with invited and university experts in the field, the films and the questions they raise about issues such as identity, community, prejudice, normalcy, etc. In addition, we strive to integrate cross-cultural and international perspectives on these issues each year. All screenings are free and open to the public.


QFS was founded in Fall 2000 by Drs. Kim Hall and Sandie Gravett, both of the Department of Philosophy and Religion. It was decided to show films weekly during October in order to honor the LGBT tradition of October 11th as National Coming Out Day. The word "Queer" was chosen to title the film series rather than "Gay and Lesbian" as a result of theoretical considerations in the emerging interdisciplinary fields of LGBT Studies and Queer Theory (see Why Queer?). Efforts are always made to choose films that complement that year's LGBT courses offerings on campus.

Initially, films were screened in meeting rooms in ASU's Student Union and attendance averaged around 50 people per night. In 2002 the venue was moved to the seventy-five seat Greenbriar Theatre and Dr. Jill Ehnenn (ENG) began co-organizing the film series with Dr. Hall. In 2006, to accommodate growing audience size, the venue was again moved, this time to the 125 seat Library Lecture Hall Room 114. Attendance has ranged from 75 people to full capacity. In fall 2008, Dr. David Orvis (ENG) joined Drs. Hall and Ehnenn as co-organizer. This fall, Dr. Sushmita Chatterjee (WS) has joined the team as co-organizer. For a list of films shown by QFS since 2000, see Past Events.


Gus Pena
(828) 262-6158

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