Villanova Cancels Gay Artist’s Show, Cites ‘Catholic Values’ As Reason

Villanova University has canceled a workshop on personal narrative by a gay performance artist, saying his shows aren’t in keeping with its Catholic values.

Artist Tim Miller, once dubbed the “patron saint of the gay performance world” by the Los Angeles Times, said he was scheduled to lead the five-day workshop for students in April but the university abruptly scrapped it on Sunday. He said his workshops focus on personal narrative and the students guide the direction they take but topics often include issues such as faith, sexuality, self and truth.

Miller said he thinks his being gay played into Villanova’s decision to cancel.

“The thing that they worry about, I think, is that I am a gay person,” he said. “Being a gay person with political opinions.”

Miller said on Tuesday he has done similar workshops at Chicago’s DePaul University, the nation’s largest Catholic university, and other schools. He said Villanova, a Catholic private university with about 10,000 students just outside Philadelphia, did not tell him why it was canceling his workshop.

“This is not my first time at the dance,” Miller said, noting the cancellation came after blog postings that were critical about him. “It’s clearly homophobia and panic.” [more]

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