|Project title||Gay Men, Straight Dictatorships: Oral History Research, Video Archive and Anthology of Interviews|
|Thematic area||Democracy and human rights|
|Name of the organization||Civil Works Association|
|Phone||06 1 708 2373|
|Project manager||Takács Mária|
|Project timeframe||August 1st, 2014 - July 30th, 2015|
|Amount of support||19,289 €|
This initiative reveals personal stories of the recent past that have not yet been told publicly. It also helps the LGBT community and majoritarian society to process these stories and construct dialogue. A large part of these stories is exactly an account of the clashes with and fear from the world outside the closet. Up to today this oppression impacts not only the victims but also the perpetrator or indifferent majority. The creators record, edit, and publish 12 video interviews on the project’s blog and social media sites and archive them. Furthermore, a photo-anthology of interviews will bepublished in 500 copies, which will be presented in the capital and in five cities in the countryside, in conjunction with personal and organizational meetings within the LGBT community. The organizors also aim to encourage elder gay people to tell their stories and share their experiences.
Progress of the project:
Our objective revealed personal stories of the recent past that have not yet been told publicly; to help the LGBT community and majoritarian society process them and construct dialogue. Up to today this oppression impacts not only the victims but also the perpetrator or indifferent majority. We record, edit, and publish 13 video interviews on the project’s blog and social media sites, then archive them. Furthermore, we published 500 copies of a photo-anthology of interviews, which was presented in the capital and in six cities in the countryside, in conjunction with personal and organizational meetings within the LGBT community.
During this one year project we made a well known blog (melegferfiak.blog.hu) and a succesfull book, Hot Men Cold Dictatorships which was on the bestseller list of Írók Boltja. One of the biggest benefit was reaching the countryside. Contributing together with different LGBT organization, we got several personal and official connection.
We believe that 25 years after the political changes this project was a big communication step foward between generations, between the LGBT community and the major society.
During the first six months of our project we sought out 13 interviewees for our book. (Seven of them also feature in our documentary film of the same name, while we found the others via an open call as well as through our personal networks.) Once the interviewing process itself was over we set out to transcribe and edit the material and plan the structure of the book.
Besides archival visual materials we also took portrait photos of our interviewees to contrast their past and present selves.
The anthology came out on July 2, 2015. We organized public book launches in the capital as well as several major towns in the countryside: Szeged, Pecs, Miskolc, Gyor, Szekesfehervar and Kecskemet.
Melegferfiak.blog.hu had served as our online platform where we had continuously been releasing excerpts from the wrapped up video interviews. Photos and short video clips were used to illustrate the blog's text. Each of our posts made it to the opening page of Index [major Hungarian online news portal], resulting in a rather high number of hits for our blog.
The video archive:
The interviews were all recorded in a video format as well, which were released on our blog three months after the book launch.