About Elise Chenier
Elise Chenier is a Professor of History at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia. Her research interests concern aspects of sexuality, gender, and race from queer, feminist, and social justice perspectives. She is currently writing a book tentatively titled Outlaws to Inlaws: Same-Sex Marriage in the United States, 1950 to 1987. This project brings the critical insights of gay and women’s liberation and queer theory to think through lesbian and gay couple’s longstanding practice of getting married in ceremonies typical of their times. More about this project can be found on the book blog, Outlaws to Inlaws.
Chenier is also the founder and director of the Archives of Lesbian Oral Testimony, an open access online archives that collects, digitizes, and transcribes existing oral history collections. The archives can be viewed here.
Her online social science research teaching tool and research archives interracialintimacies.org is based on her published research on intimate relationships between white women and men of Chinese heritage in Toronto between 1910 and 1950. This research challenges the long-standing belief that before the Second World War, male migrants of Chinese heritage lived loveless, sexless lives in “bachelor societies.” This tool was shortlisted for the prestigious Wharton-QS Reimagine Education Award.
Elise is a popular public speaker who has addressed audiences across Canada, the United States, Europe and the United Kingdom. She has provided expert commentary for the Canadian and American media on everything from same-sex marriage legislation, “pinkwashing,” the labia selfie, to Justin Trudeau’s 2015 electoral victory. Her passion for thinking critically about sexuality, race, and gender carries through to the classroom; she received the 2015 Cormack Teaching Award. You can watch a video presentation of her Cormack talk here.
Chenier’s research has been supported by numerous grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, and by a Fulbright Fellowship.