As someone who identifies as gender queer, Mestiz@, materialist, and Catholic, L Heidenreich brings a unique perspective to the study of history that is hard to find in most classrooms.
“I loved my history classes growing up, but my family wasn’t in them,” said Heidenreich, an associate professor of history at Washington State University. “It wasn’t until I got to grad school and could choose my focus that I had the opportunity to study the histories I wanted. I think we as history educators have an obligation to make it easier for future generations.”
In the classroom, Heidenreich said the goal of their work is to give young people a broader perspective about the lives and history of LGBTQ people, an area of history which is integral to America’s past and present but is often marginalized. “October is LGBTQ History Month and it’s sad that we need a month to acknowledge the history of our communities,” Heidenreich said. “But nevertheless, I think it is important to send a message about the vital importance of recognizing and exploring the role of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people in American history.”