One of Britain’s most active campaigners for human rights, Peter Tatchell, will be in York this week to talk toleration.
Mr Tatchell will give the 2014 Morrell Memorial Address at the University of York on Tuesday, October 28.
In his lecture, Homosexuality: From toleration to acceptance, he will take a critical look at the 1957 Wolfenden Report and 1967 Sexual Offences Act as examples of an era of disapproving tolerance.
Mr Tatchell will then move on to examine the transition to the current majority acceptance of same-sex relations.
The annual Morrell Address has been organised by the Morrell Centre for Toleration since 1981, using funding from the C and JB Morrell Trust.
Professor Baroness Susan Greenfield, Sir Edward Heath, Baroness Helena Kennedy QC and Mark Tully, have been invited to York to speak on issues surrounding toleration
Director of the Morrell Centre for Toleration Professor Matt Matravers said they were honoured that he had agreed to give the address.
“Peter’s long experience as an activist is particularly relevant to the discussion of toleration, and especially to the question of the accommodation of groups often regarded as marginal.
“I can think of no-one better qualified to confront the sometimes very difficult issues involved.”
Campaigning for 40 years
Campaigning for the rights of the marginalised and vulnerable for more than 40 years, Peter Tatchell helped to organise Britain’s first Gay Pride march in 1972.
An activist in defence of gay rights, his campaigning has often come at personal cost, from being interrogated by the Stasi in East Germany to accosted by Robert Mugabe’s bodyguards when trying to arrest Mr Mugabe in London.
Mr Tatchell has campaigned for Gaza and the West Bank to be the basis of an independent Palestinian state, has written about the dangers of climate change and has criticised the Catholic church and the Pope for homophobia.
He chose Malcolm X as his specialist subject when appearing on Celebrity Mastermind.