Unboxed: Transgender in a Gay Museum? (January 18–March 1, 2019, Schwules Museum Berlin) was a small exhibition that showed about 150 archival objects in two rooms of the Schwules Museum (SMU) at the beginning of 2019. The objects displayed were created by, or contained information about, trans-identified people, and for the most part (except for one loan from the Lili Elbe Archive for Trans, Inter, and Queer History Berlin) were taken from the Schwules Museum's own collection. The aim of the exhibition was to encourage debate about the SMU's archival practice by posing several questions. Can an archive, as a place where meaning seems fixed and people come to seek out “truths,” be challenged to accommodate new voices and perspectives? Can archivists reveal trans narratives without breaking up collections? And how do they deal with changing terminology? In an attempt to address these questions, the exhibition mapped a four-stage journey...

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