Episode 21: The Real Housewife of Rome

What better way to celebrate the New Year than with a new episode of History is Gay? This time, Gretchen and Leigh dive into the brief, controversial, and totally extra reign of Emperor Elagabalus of Rome. Or rather, Empress Elagabalus! Whether it be marrying multiple wives and one husband, revolutionizing the Roman religion, installing women as senators, throwing parties with sex workers, or enjoying the attention of well-endowed men, Elagabalus was as unconventional as they come. And chances are, she may very well have been a trans woman.


0:00 – Introduction
4:23 – Main Topic: Elagabalus
8:40 – Socio-Historical and Religious Context
13:31 – Fun Segment: Word of the Week
22:47 – Elagabal and Roman Religion
29:39 – Who were they? Bio Time. 
54:48 – Why do we think they're gay?
1:08:30 – Analysis from Queer Historians
1:09:49 – Fun Segment: Pop Culture Tie-In
1:12:45 – How Gay were They?
1:17:10 – Closing and Where to Find us Online

For a full list of sources and bonus content, visit our Notes page! 

Apple Podcasts  |    Google Play    |    RadioPublic    |    Stitcher    |    Download

Episode 3: Mei Ai Hold Your Hand? Homosexuality in Imperial China

As your hosts return to examine the unexplored corners of history to highlight overlooked queer ladies, gents, and gentle-enbies, they bring a conversation about homosexuality in Imperial China. They will discuss the unique tradition of male homosexuality present for over 2500 years, what made it possible, and how tragic it’s loss is for modern China. And don’t worry, even though female homosexuality doesn’t have the same strong literary tradition, there are plenty of delightful stories, and a new ‘word of the week’ related to queer lady experience!


0:00 – Introduction
3:55 – Main Topic: Homosexuality in Imperial China
      13:38 – Social Context: Confucianism, Daoism, and Conceptions of Sex
      22:46 – Social Context: Different Kinds of Sexual Relationships Between Men
      23:41-24:36 - CONTENT WARNING: pederasty mention
      30:23– Examples!
1:10:30 - CONTENT WARNING: pederasty mention
1:11:50 – Word of the Week: dui shi (“shared eating”)
1:17:33 – Takeaways
1:20:14 – How gay were they?
1:23:06 – Where to find us online

For a full list sources and bonus content for this episode, visit our Notes page!

Apple Podcasts  |    Google Play    |    Stitcher    |    Download