Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Living Memory LGBT History Timeline

The Transgender Aging Network (TAN) of FORGE is pleased to announce the release of a new teaching tool, “Living Memory LGBT History Timeline,” available for download at

Lesbian, gay male, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) elders may approach “mainstream” aging, health, and other public and private services differently than their heterosexual and/or gender-normative peers. Every person is shaped in part by the major public events that happen during their lifetime, whether these events are tragedies like 9/11 or struggles and triumphs like the Civil Rights Movement or passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Although each individual will draw different conclusions and make different life choices in reaction to such public events, knowing what was reported in the media and discussed at dinner during a person’s lifetime may help others understand how that individual’s worldview was shaped.

To offer those who work with, live with, or love LGBT elders insight into their concerns, lifestyles, and belief sets, the Transgender Aging Network (TAN) has constructed the “Living Memory LGBT History Timeline.” Divided by decade (starting with the 1920s), the timeline cross-references how old those who are currently ages 50 to 100 would have been when critical LGBT events or changes took place.

“Not all of us know our history well,” said TAN Executive Director Loree Cook-Daniels, “And even those of us who do can forget just how much change can take place during a lifetime. We can also forget how often advances are accompanied by setbacks, and the level of fear and uncertainty this can cause people who are old enough to remember losing rights that had previously seemed secure. We believe this new timeline can be an effective tool to increase the cultural competency of everyone who works with elders and who therefore may be working with LGBT people.”

The timeline may be copied and distributed in its entirety if it is used solely for educational purposes. All other potential users should contact to discuss reprint permission.

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FORGE was founded in 1984 to support, educate and advocate for the rights and lives of female-to-male (FTM) transgender individuals and SOFFAs (Significant Others, Friends, Family, and Allies). FORGE is dedicated to helping move our fragmented communities beyond identity politics and forge a movement that embraces and empowers our diverse complexities.

For more information on FORGE, see our website at
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