This blog quite frequently highlights holdings from the Neil Richards Collection for Sexual and Gender Diversity as prime examples of intriguing materials collected for the study of sexuality and gender issues. However, the University Archives and Special Collections’ holdings on these topics do not end there. A number of fonds include materials which would be useful to those pursuing a study of gender and or sexuality from a local perspective.
One of these is the Sexual Health Awareness Center, at one point an office within Student Health Services. The archives holds nine boxes transferred from the Sexual Health Awareness center in 2007. These boxes contain publications on topics ranging from teaching children about sex, to contraception, to sexual violence, disease, women’s rights, and same-sex relationships. What is interesting about a collection like this is the way it encapsulates rapidly changing notions about sex and sexuality during a specific period (in this case, the 1970’s into the 1990’s). While the materials are generally too outdated to be used within Student Health Services today, they still serve an important purpose in historically framing the discussion of sex and gender on campus. Along these lines also are materials held in the USSU Student Help Centre fonds and the Student Representative Council.
For anyone interested in studying the impact of HIV/AIDS in the province, University of Saskatchewan University Archives and Special Collections has papers from both the Saskatchewan AIDS Network (est. 1995) and AIDS Saskatoon (est. 1986). These two organizations played (and in the case of AIDS Saskatoon continue to play) an important role in spreading education about HIV/AIDS within Saskatchewan. Organizations like these have facilitated the creation and maintenance of community partnerships and support networks which serve those living with HIV/AIDS. These two collections supply 6 meters of material relating to the early impact of HIV and AIDS on a local level.
With specific reference to LGBTQ issues, the University Archives and Special Collections has gathered the papers of a number of early participants in the gay rights movement in Saskatchewan including Gens Hellquist, Don Cochrane, Donald McNamee, Peter Millard, and Neil Richards. Also noteworthy are the USSU LGBTA Centre holdings which include posters and pamphlets, and materials from the Canadian Rainbow Health Coalition (est. 2002) which was a National organization based out of Saskatoon, devoted to improving the health care and status of LGBTQ individuals. A more lighthearted look at the province through a queer lens can be found in exploring the Cross-dressing in Saskatchewan collection and the Greystone Secrets fonds.
Women’s issues are also a highlight of UASC’s holdings. For the visually inclined, there is a large collection of women’s and feminist posters acquired from the Avenue Community Centre, and a number of fascinating portraits of Canadian women in the John Reeves collection. The Saskatoon Women’s Calendar Collective fonds contains both visual and textual materials highlighting women of significance. Extensive materials on women’s rights and gender issues can be found in the USSU’s Women’s Centre fonds as well. For more individualized perspectives on women’s rights and forward-thinking local women of the past, the Charlotte Caron, Marie Dunn, S. A. Gingell, Gwenna Moss, M. H. Pattillo, Nan McKay, and Jean Murray papers provide a plethora of material.
These materials represent only a small portion of those available for primary and secondary resource study of gender and sexual diversity from a local perspective. There is always more to be discovered, and always new materials coming in. If you would like to access any of these materials, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or phone (306) 966-6029 with details on your research project to receive full finding aids and research advice.