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Academic | Writer | Performer


recent activities



Spring 2022


A new LGBTQ+ performance and music night at Cambridge Junction. Founded by Diarmuid Hester, Ema Boswood, Celia Willoughby, Roeland Van Der Heiden, and Rosie Cooper in partnership with Cambridge Junction and Wysing Arts Centre.

Writer and activist Edward Carpenter popularised the use of the term 'Uranian' to refer to queer people. Later, a little-known London publication called Urania was the first British magazine to openly discuss gender variance. The editors said: ‘there are no “men” or “women” in Urania’.


Club Urania takes its name in tribute to this utopian vision. 

Image: Diarmuid Hester hosts Club Urania. Photo by Dani Oliver



December 2020


Allen Lane/Penguin will publish Diarmuid Hester's new book, Nothing Ever Just Disappears: Seven Hidden Histories in 2023. 

The book considers the impact of place on some of the twentieth-century's most fascinating queer artists like E.M. Forster, James Baldwin, Josephine Baker, and Claude Cahun.


At a time when queer spaces are increasingly under threat, Nothing Ever Just Disappears argues passionately and persuasively for their centrality to queer culture, then and now.

Image: Claude Cahun, I Extend My Arms (1931)



June 2020


University of Iowa Press has published Wrong: A Critical Biography of Dennis Cooper, the definitive account of one of America's most acclaimed and controversial writers. 


Wrong is a lively retrospective of Cooper's 50-year career, from his early poetry to his shocking novels of the '90s to his recent turn to filmmaking. Using archival research, close readings, and new interviews, it weaves a complex and often thrilling biographical narrative that cements Cooper’s status as a leading figure of the post-War avant-garde. 

‘A riveting chronicle of Dennis Cooper’s intertwined life and work’

—Wayne Koestenbaum, author, Camp Marmalade


March 2020


Dr Diarmuid Hester has been named a New Generation Thinker by a joint committee of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and the BBC.


Defined as an academic who ‘brings the best of university research and scholarly ideas to a broad audience through the media and public engagement’, New Generation Thinkers work closely with producers at the BBC, contributing to radio broadcasts and developing research projects into programmes for a general public.


Diarmuid Hester is a radical cultural historian, activist, and author of the critically acclaimed Wrong: A Critical Biography of Dennis Cooper. He is an authority on sexually dissident literature, art, film, and performance based at the Faculty of English, University of Cambridge. Diarmuid is represented by Matthew Marland at RCW.

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