Nicholas Matte

Nicholas Matte is a politically-conscious interdisciplinary historian who curates the Sexual Representation Collection and teaches in the Sexual Diversity Studies program. In his classrooms, Dr. Matte builds learning environments that foster creative thinking and he encourages students to grapple with new and difficult ideas, particularly those they find most interesting and relevant to their interests, lives, and goals. As a historian who works with living memory and marginalized communities, Matte connects historical contexts and efforts with present-day experiences through oral histories and other interactive and engaging interdisciplinary methods.

Matte’s teaching and research reflect longstanding interests in how sex, gender, sexuality, health, disability, race and capitalism inform individual desires, embodied social experiences, identities, relationships, community formations, and socio-cultural advocacy. Matte’s dissertation “Historicizing Liberal American Transnormativities: Medicine, Media, Activism, 1960-1990,” traces early institutional advocacy efforts to re-imagine and reconfigure gender and sexuality into the categories and identities often still contested today. Through his extensive involvement with trans archiving he also facilitates student engagement with a wide range of significant primary resources, such as the University of Victoria’s Transgender Archives and the Digital Transgender Archives.

As curator of the Sexual Representation Collection Matte works with students and researchers to provide access to significant and rare primary source materials, to enrich teaching and research opportunities and to bring relevant historical research and archiving methods alive, especially to today’s most pressing social questions. The SRC also supports professional archival training for graduate students in the ischool’s Master of Museum Studies and Archives and Records Management graduate programs through practicum and work-study positions. The SRC also hosts paid work-study and volunteer internship opportunities.

Dr. Matte has worked on and been involved with numerous community-based organizations, events, and research and education projects and teams, including feminist working group Emilia-Amalia, Transforming Justice, TransEd, LGBT Digital Archives and Oral History Collaboratory, and others. Matte also sits on the Advisory Board of Digital Transgender Archives.

Research Publications:

“Rupert Raj, FTMs, (Homo)Sexuality and Transnormativity in North America during the 1980s,” in We Still Demand! Redefining Resistance in Sex and Gender Struggles, ed. Patrizia Gentile, Gary Kinsmen and Pauline Rankin (Vancouver: UBC Press, 2017), 117-136.

“The Economic and Racial Politics of Selling a Transfeminine Fantasy in 1970s Niche and Pornographic Print Publications,” in Porno Chic and the Sex Wars: American Sexual Representation in the 1970s, ed. Whitney Strub and Carolyn Bronstein (Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2016), 154-177.

“Highlighting Trans Archival Materials without a Minority/Identity Framework at the University of Toronto’s Sexual Representation Collection,” TSQ: a journal of Transgender Studies 2.4 (2015): 596-606.

“Rupert Raj and the rise of Transsexual Consumer Activism in the 1980s” in Trans Activism in Canada: A Reader, ed. Dan Irving and Rupert Raj (Toronto: Canadian Scholar’s Press, 2013), 33-44.

[Co-written with Aaron Devor and Theresa Vladicka] “Nomenclature in the Standards of Care for the World Professional Association of Transgender Health: Background and Recommendations,” International Journal of Transgenderism, 11.1 (2009): 42-52.

[Co-written with Aaron Devor] “Building a Better World for Trans People: Reed Erickson and the Erickson Educational Foundation” International Journal of Transgenderism, 10:1 (Spring 2007), 47-68.
[Co-written with Aaron Devor] “ONE Inc. and Reed Erickson: The Uneasy Collaboration of Gay and Trans Activism, 1964-2003,” Transgender Studies Reader, ed. by Stephen Whittle and Susan Stryker, Routledge, 2006.

“International Sexology and Sexual Reform in Europe, 1897-1933,” Canadian Bulletin of Medical History, 22:2 (2005): 253-270.

[Co-written with Aaron Devor]  “ONE Inc. and Reed Erickson: The Uneasy Collaboration of Gay and Trans Activism, 1964-2003,” GLQ: A Journal of Gay and Lesbian Research Quarterly, 10:2 (2004), 179-209.