Featured events

7-9 September 2012
Brussels Games

Brussels Gay Sports will offer a weekend of fun and fairplay in the capital of Europe, with volleyball, swimming, badminton, and tennis, as well as fitness and hiking.

Learn more HERE.
26-28 October 2012
Bern, Switzerland

The success of the first edition of the QueergamesBern proved the need for an LGBT multisport event in Switzerland. This year will be even bigger, with badminton, bowling, running, walking, floorball.

Learn more HERE.
17-20 January 2013
Sin City Shootout
Las Vegas
The 7th Sin City Shootout will feature softball, ice hockey, tennis, wrestling, basketball, dodgeball, bodybuilding and basketball.

Learn more HERE.

13-16 June 2013
IGLFA Euro Cup
After this year's edition in Budapest at the EuroGames, the IGLFA Euro Cup heads to Dublin for 2013, hosted by the Dublin Devils and the Dublin Phoenix Tigers.

Learn more HERE.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Play the Game, Day 3, Part 2

Find the Play the Game 2011 website with more information, photos, video, program, etc. HERE.

After a long day, with a first session that started at 9am, it was 6:45pm and time for the session in which I would be speaking. With two other interesting parallel sessions (on tech doping and sports journalism) competing for the eyes of participants, and session fatigue ruling out dozens of people, I was pleased that about 20 persons (after some prodding of coffee breakers from volunteers) were present for our session on “transgender challenges”.

The session opend with a talk from Honorata Jakubowska from Poznan, Poland, who spoke on “Gender (division) troubles in sports”. She questioned the dichotomy of dividing sport into men's and women's competitions, claiming that offering women the possibility of competing against men would raise the profile of women athletes. In my opinion, as I said in my talk, this would not result in greater visibility for women athletes, but rather in the exclusion of almost all women from competitive sport. I recalled that the demands for a protected space for women's sport came mainly from women themselves.

My talk followed, and I took a different tack than other speakers: rather than rely on Powerpoint bullet points, I used a slideshow of photos from past Gay Games, with a healthy dose of images from last year's Gay Games VIII in Cologne, showing sports in the very venues where this conference was taking place. My goal was to show the Gay Games as an event for all sorts of athletes, highlighting our principle of Inclusion. I pointed out the tension between respect for the standards of sport and our need to respect our values, leading to a policy that is very generous with regard to the participation of transgender athletes in their real gender, even if this is not their legal gender.

The final talk of the session was by Zeljko Blace of FGG member organization qSport Croatia. Like Ms Jakubowska, he strayed from the ostensible topic of transgender athletes to speak of his work on “QueerSport”, a category that defies categorization, but that is full of intriguing potential for expression and change.

The discussion afterwards was very rich, with engaging questions from the audience and a lively exchange among the speakers. Alas, these parallel sessions weren't live streamed, so video is not currently available.

Kim Schimmel, Nikki Dryden,
Annette Hoffmann
The day concluded with a dinner hosted by the conference organizers and the Danish Institute of Sport Studies and aimed at networking and exchange on the key topics of the conference. Clearly while video streaming is a great option, there is nothing like the personal exchanges possible at such a conference.

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