About The Bridge Generation
Edited by host artists Claire Robson and Kelsey Blair, with introductions by Dr. Elise Chenier (SFU Department of History).
The Quirk-e anthology of short prose and graphic memoirs chronicles the authors’ journey from no rights to civil rights. The members of Quirk-e describe themselves as a “discordant and unruly choir, insisting, despite the odds, on showing the height, depth and breadth of their experiences.” Once defined as sick outlaws, imprisoned in jails and mental institutions, strapped down and ‘cured’ with electric shocks, they’ve lived a Canadian journey from no rights, to civil rights, and these are their stories.
To order your copies, please visit www.quirk-e.com
Review by GSWS Professor, Helen Leung
The Bridge Generation: A Queer Elders’ Chronicle from No Rights to Civil Rights by Quirk-e is much more than just a book. It is itself a piece of community history. Not only does it document a generation’s courage, resistance, and quirkiness, it enacts those very qualities in the process of its own making. The stories collected in the book were incubated through a series of writing workshops for queer elders that ultimately transformed into a collective process of art-making and community-building. The book includes short essays that contextualize the historical eras that shaped the stories: from the 1940s-1950s when homosexuality was still classified as a mental disease all the way to the 2000s when same-sex marriage became legal in Canada. The histories, however, serve only as settings to the real stars of the show: the stories. Crafted with care and skill, these stories sparkle like little gems on the readers’ palm - precious, fragile, each utterly unique. A lot of them teach us about fear: of an AIDS test result, of workplace hostility, of a homophobic killer still at large. Yet, they also show us that sufferings are tempered by tenderness: the frisson of experiencing one’s first same-sex dance, the joy of being a child’s “chosen” Grammas, the comfort of a new-found daughter’s unquestioned acceptance. The Bridge Generation is moving, resilient, and profoundly sincere. It will be a most rewarding read by anyone who cares about queer history, social activism, and the creativity of everyday life.
Helen Hok-Sze Leun