This panel is a conversation about the role of registering and documenting the histories of trans folk. María Belén Correa, the founder of the El Archivo de la Memoria Trans (Argentine); Verónica Fieiras of Chaco Editorial, publisher of the book Archivo de la Memoria Trans; and Dr. Aaron Devor from the Transgender Archives (University of Victoria) will join us in a discussion about the practices and politics surrounding queer archiving and trans archiving in particular.
Aaron Devor, Chair in Transgender Studies & Archives
Aaron Devor has been studying and teaching transgender topics since the early 1980s. He established and holds the world’s first Chair in Transgender Studies; initiated and hosts the international, interdisciplinary Moving Trans History Forward conferences; and founded and serves as subject matter expert for the world’s largest Transgender Archives.
The Transgender Archives at the University of Victoria, founded in 2011 by Aaron Devor, preserve and safeguard the history of pioneering Trans+ activists and community leaders, and researchers who have contributed to the betterment of Trans+ people. Their records of research related to Trans+ people go back to the nineteenth century, while their records on activism by Trans+ people start in 1960 and are in fifteen languages from twenty-three countries on all continents except Antarctica. At over 160 linear metres (one and a half football fields long), their collections comprise, by far, the largest Trans+ archives in the world. Collections are open to the public at no charge.
María Belén Correa and Verónica Fieiras
The Archivo Trans project began with Claudia Pía Baudracco and María Belén Correa, two activists who were instrumental in creating Argentina’s first trans organization (ATA) and passing the country’s first trans rights bill (the Gender Identity Law). Pía and María Belén always imagined having a space to reunite surviving compañeras and their memories. After Pía died in 2012, María Belén started the archive from a box of Pía’s old photos. In 2014, with the help of photographer Cecilia Estalles, they began collecting and digitally preserving Pía’s photographs and others from the trans community. Six years later, the archive houses a collection of more than 10,000 documents, with material dating back to the early twentieth century and up until the late 1990s.
Created in 2015 by Verónica Fieiras, CHACO is an independent space for alternative and experimental approaches to publishing, understanding bookmaking as a creative journey to walk alongside the author, reinterpreting and adapting his work into a new expressive medium.