Photos C/O USC Hugh M. Hefner Moving Image Archive
If you’re an avid reader of the Silhouette, then you’d know our annual rendition of Sex and the Steel City, much like the paper itself, has evolved quite a bit over the past couple of years.
Putting together this year’s sex-positive publication meant embracing the diverse ideas around sexuality, love and health. It’s about creating a non-judgemental space where experiences can be shared, identities are expressed and art can be enjoyed.
Through Sex and the Steel City we were also able to explore Hamilton’s history, challenge the issues our communities’ face and open eyes to future possibilities with passion and dedication.
Every word and visual in this issue is also a reflection of the privileged position we, as a publication, are in to unapologetically express ourselves. A position that has been continuously denied to people historically and as of late.
For this reason our cover includes re-creations of stills from the recently discovered film Something Good – Negro Kiss. Directed by William Selig in 1898, the film depicts the earliest on-screen kiss between two Black stage entertainers and challenges the racist caricature prevalent in popular culture. In the 29-second silent film, Saint Suttle and Gertie Brown convey undeniable expression of love, pleasure and happiness.
Stills from Something Good – Negro Kiss, a silent short film directed by William Selig in 1898 and starring Saint Suttle and Gertie Brown. The film was discovered and restored by University of Southern California archivist Dino Everett and identified by University of Chicago scholar Allyson Field.
We hope to continue the conversation around barriers that continue to marginalize identities today while also celebrating everything good they have to share.
Sex and the Steel City is a hopeful expression that love will prevail.