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Queer as Fact

History Podcasts >

Queer history podcast covering a variety of content from around the world and throughout time. Episodes released 1st and 15th of every month.

Queer history podcast covering a variety of content from around the world and throughout time. Episodes released 1st and 15th of every month.
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Queer history podcast covering a variety of content from around the world and throughout time. Episodes released 1st and 15th of every month.






Baron von Steuben

Today we’re talking about Baron von Steuben, who served in the American army during the Revolutionary War, and over the winter of 1777-1778 turned them from a mismatched bunch of volunteers into a group of professional soldiers. Join us for flaming shots, daring escapes from the British, and an important discussion of Steuben’s role as Alexander Hamilton’s gay dad. Transcript available here.

Duration: 01:10:47

Edward II

In this episode we’re talking about Edward II, 14th-century king of England, who almost ruined a country by being too gay. Featuring pirates, several nasty executions, and your hosts’ ancestral Scottish rage. Happy New Year! Transcript available here

Duration: 01:32:00

Christmas Special - Anne Lister Revisted

Happy Christmas! Queer as Fact is celebrating by bringing you this bonus episode, covering the second half of the life of lesbian diarist and land-owner Anne Lister. Improve your Christmas with first-hand accounts of 19th-century lesbian shenanigans, Anne’s struggles to find a suitable wife, and an unfortunate touch of voter fraud that’s not truly in the spirit of the holiday. Transcript available here. We’ll give you a summary, but for the first half of Anne’s story, listen to our...

Duration: 01:04:26

Lesbia Harford

This episode focuses on Lesbia Harford, an early 20th century Australian woman poet. Lesbia was one of the first female graduates of Melbourne University, a dedicated political activist, and once had someone drink champagne out of her shoe. Transcript available here.

Duration: 01:08:37

HIV/AIDS in Australia

Today, on World AIDS Day, we discuss the history of HIV and AIDS in Australia, from its first arrival in 1982 until the present day. In this episode you’ll learn about the infamous Grim Reaper ad campaigns, the tireless battle of queer Australians to help each other in this time, and how the country’s positive response to the epidemic saved the lives of many gay and bisexual men.

Duration: 01:08:28

The Warren Cup

Today’s episode focuses on the Warren Cup, a silver cup from the Roman Empire in the 1st century, which has artistic depictions of male/male sex on it. Expect to learn a lot about ancient Greek and Roman sexuality!

Duration: 01:24:00

Shelly’s Leg

In today’s episode we’re talking about Shelly’s Leg, Seattle’s first openly gay club, which operated from 1973 until 1978. Get prepared for a two-explosion story, including a confetti canon, eight foot tall nude women, and a possible cameo by David Bowie.

Duration: 00:40:29

Rosa Bonheur

In this episode, we talk about French artist Rosa Bonheur, one of the most famous female artists of the 19th century. Not only was Rosa so well known for her painting that many American children has “Rosa Bonheur” dolls, during her life she kept pet lions, defended her town from invading Prussians, and received a Legion of Honour from the Empress Eugenie.

Duration: 01:16:21

Henrietta Bingham

In this episode we talk about bisexual jazz age heiress Henrietta Bingham. Although she struggled with depression, anxiety and addiction, as well as the homophobia typical of the period, Henrietta also led a full and exciting life. Her lovers included a world number one tennis player, and members of the Bloomsbury group; she mingled with artists and writers, supported the African-American jazz scene, and at least once, played the saxophone while standing on top of a piano.

Duration: 01:21:27

Josephine Baker

The week of Saturday September 23rd is Bisexual Awareness Week and to celebrate, we’re talking about the life of bisexual performer Josephine Baker! Josephine’s life covers much of the 20th century, beginning as a poor child in the slums of St. Louis and becoming the biggest celebrity of her time. Along the way, she was a World War II spy, a civil rights activist, and the lover of many men and women.

Duration: 01:23:44

Queer women in medieval Arab literature

In this episode, we look at the Quran, 1001 Nights and medieval sex manuals to explore attitudes to queer women in the Middle East, Spain and North Africa from the 9 century to the 14 century. Find out about the first lesbians, the correct sounds to make during sex, and how eating celery will turn your children gay. Transcript available here

Duration: 02:36:12

The Secret Sex Spreadsheets of John Maynard Keynes

Today’s episode is a romp through the Bloomsbury Group guided by John Maynard Keynes, one of the great economists of the 20th century, and his meticulous table of sexual partners from 1901 to 1915. Expect polyamory, top secret telegrams and Russian spies.

Duration: 00:52:02

Yoshiya Nobuko

This episode details the life and times of Yoshiya Nobuko, a prolific and extremely successful Japanese author of the 20th century and possibly the first Japanese woman to own a racehorse. Listen on for flower metaphors, fifteen page love letters and ’20s flappers from all over the globe.

Duration: 01:09:23

Gad Beck

Today’s episode is on educator and activist Gad Beck (1923-2012). A member of the Jewish underground resistance in Berlin during WWII, Gad was the last known living gay survivor of the Holocaust.

Duration: 01:00:51

Queer Love in Early Chinese History

In this episode we look into three important stories from early Chinese history that were used to discuss male-male queer romance and sexuality for hundreds of years to come. Expect romance, intrigue, poison and daring midnight carriage rides. Transcript available here.

Duration: 01:03:05

Vaslav Nijinsky

Today’s episode is about Vaslav Nijinsky, a Polish-Russian ballet dancer of the early twentieth century. Considered both the best and most controversial dancer of his era, Nijinsky changed the course of ballet history. Transcript available here.

Duration: 00:49:03

Charity Bryant and Sylvia Drake

“…this heart to her inclin’d by every gentle tie that binds the tender heart…” -Charity Bryant, 1808 In today’s episode we’re talking about Charity Bryant and Sylvia Drake. Charity and Sylvia were a same-sex couple who lived together in 19th century Weybridge, Vermont for over 40 years, recognised by members of their community as a married couple. Transcript [...]

Duration: 00:50:25

Anne Lister

Today’s episode is on Anne Lister, a landowner, prolific diarist, and same-sex attracted woman who lived in Yorkshire during the 19th century and journalled her life and her innumerable love affairs in intimate detail. Featuring: Secret Lesbian Code! Transcript available here.

Duration: 01:05:39

Captain Moonlite - Part 2

Part two of our first full length episode. Part one is also out now, so listen to that first. In this episode, we discuss the life of the Australian bushranger Captain Moonlite (1845-1880). Starting as a respected man of the church, he is convicted of bank robbery, meets the love of his life, James Nesbitt, and breaks out of prison, becoming one of Australia’s most famous bushrangers. Transcript available here.

Duration: 01:45:14


A quick introduction on who we are and what our podcast is about. Our first episode, on the Australian bushranger Captain Moonlite, is also out.

Duration: 00:01:31