The End of Gay? Adam Knowles, Chair of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association

Is the end of gay conceivable? Is gay 'just a phase', not for individuals but for society?

Adam Knowles, Chair of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association, argues that it could be, but not until the insight offered by queer culture has been taken up. He will present the Central London Humanist Group with an argument that a path toward this vision is available - and help you decide if it's impossible or inevitable.

Mapping a broad historical view of gay from ignored to illegal through tolerated to integrated, this talk will outline some of the possibilities for the future and put the case for a modern conception of human sexuality. What happens is up to all of us: gay, straight or otherwise.

The talk comes at a poignant time as we grieve the loss of David Kato, the gay human rights campaigner who was brutally murdered in Uganda. The homophobia displayed even at his own funeral acts as a reminder that the fight for equal human rights across the world is far from over.

The event will start at 6.30pm and take place in the Bloomsbury Room at Canterbury Hall (the building next door to our usual venue Hughes Parry Hall) - further details are below. It will finish around 8pm, followed by optional discussion in the nearby Lord John Russell pub.

Marco Tranchino, CLHG committee member and human rights activist, will chair the event. 

About the speaker

Adam Knowles is Chair of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association, a voluntary group founded in 1979 that promotes LGBT rights as an important component of justice and Humanism as a worldview important to our lives in the 21st century. Elected as Chair in January 2010, Adam’s mission is to expand the organisation’s membership and “to fight the remaining bastions of homophobia in the UK and the more explicit problems in Europe and elsewhere.”

Adam is an active member in British Humanist Association and supports secular campaigns, most recently the Protest the Pope Campaign which resulted in 20,000 people marching through London in protest of the Pope’s state-funded visit. Recent media work includes BBC TV and Five Live.

He grew up in Manchester, studied International Relations and works in digital marketing.

About the chair

Marco Tranchino joined the Central London Humanist Group (CLHG) in 2008 after several years of involvement with gay rights activists and secularist groups in Rome.

He is the driving force behind the annual London for a Secular Europe march, which sees its fourth year in London in 2011, and the London Kiss & Hug-in Against Homophobia & Transphobia protest outside of Parliament. Moved by Steven Monjeza and Tiwonge Chimbalanga’s fight for justice oversees, Marco helped to organise a protest against the couple’s 14-year prison sentence outside of the Malawian embassy.

Most recently, and perhaps most triumphantly, Marco represented the CLHG on the committee of the Protest the Pope Campaign, working with Adam and partners to deliver a clear message to the Vatican and British government on the importance of secularism.

Background reading

Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association:

Peter Tatchell’s blog:

The BHA’s campaign for same sex marriage:

The Equal Love campaign:

About the venue

The event will take place in the Bloomsbury Room at Canterbury Hall. This is the building next door to our usual venue Hughes Parry Hall. Please go to the reception at Canterbury Hall and you will be directed downstairs to the Bloomsbury Room.

The Hall is located by Cartwright Gardens close to Russell Square in Bloomsbury.

Russell Square (Piccadilly Line), Kings Cross (Northern, Victoria, Piccadilly, Circle and Metropolitan Lines and Mainline Rail) and Euston Station (Victoria & Northern Lines and Mainline Rail) are all within walking distance of the venue.

A map can be found here:

This venue is wheelchair accessible. 

Cost and booking

Please RSVP to book your place using the function on the right hand side of this page.

A voluntary donation of £2 will be collected at the end of the meeting to cover costs of the room. 


This meeting is organised by Alice. Feel free to send me any questions/ suggestions you have about this or other events. 


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