DO YOU KNOW WHAT ‘POLARI’ IS?
Ssshhh! Bedford Borough Libraries would like
to let you into a secret and invite you to an evening with
Paul Burston, on Tuesday 18th
February, at 7pm, at Bedford
Central Library, for his presentation on ‘Polari’.
Polari is a form of slang that was used in
Britain by a number of different groups over the years. It was used
in London fish markets, theatre, fairgrounds and circuses. As many
gay men worked in theatrical entertainments it was also used among
the gay subculture, at a time when homosexual activity was illegal,
to disguise homosexuals from hostile outsiders. The use of it died
out in the 1970’s, but Paul will be bringing it back to life.
Cllr Doug McMurdo, Portfolio Holder for
Leisure and Culture at Bedford Borough Council, said: “This is a
fascinating topic, and in the last few years, more and more people
have been finding out about it. Paul’s presentation will examine
the history of the secret in-group language of Polari from a
Author and journalist, Paul, created London’s
award-winning Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT)
literary salon ‘Polari’ and The Polari First Book Prize.
His first book was ‘A Queer Romance’, followed
by a collection of essays and articles, ‘What Are You Looking At?’
His first novel, ‘Shameless’, was published in 2001 and was
shortlisted for the State of Britain Award.
Paul writes for a variety of newspapers and
magazines, including The Guardian. He was shortlisted for
‘Journalist of the Year’ at the European Diversity Awards in 2011,
and the Stonewall Awards in 2012.
If you would like to attend this event, get
your tickets in advance from within the Bedford Central Library, or
by telephone on 01234 718178 and prepare yourself
for a fantabulosa evening!