On April 27, 2021 we hosted a free screening of Cured presented with support from Utah Pride Center. Do you have questions or looking for resources after watching the film? Here is a list of resources about the film and subject:
- Learn more about the film
- Resources about the American Psychiatric Association (APA) and the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)
- American Psychiatric Association – Sexual Orientation & Homosexuality
- Wikipedia – Homosexuality in the DSM
- This American Life – “ 81 Words – The story of how the American Psychiatric Association decided in 1973 that homosexuality was no longer a mental illness”
- New York Times article from 1973 – “The A.P.A. Ruling on Homosexuality: The issue is subtle the debate still on”
- Learn more about Dr. Anonymous, Dr. John E. Fryer
- Historical Society of Pennsylvania – Read Dr. Anonymous’s full speech from the 1972 APA Conference in Dallas (transcript | handwritten speech – page loads slowly, but will load)
- The British Psychological Society – “The lasting legacy of Dr. Anonymous”
- Washington Post obituary – “Psychiatrist John E. Fryer”
- New York Times obituary – “Dr. John Fryer, 65, Psychiatrist Who Said in 1972 He Was Gay”
- Post-film discussion from our April 27, 2021 screening
- Patrick Sammon, one half of the Cured directing team (IMDB)
- Joshua Bravo, Director of Counseling Services and Queer History Committee member at the Utah Pride Center
- Dr. Candice Metzler, Executive Director of TEA (Transgender Education Advocates) of Utah and a therapist at Metzler Counseling Services
- Dr. Charles P. Hoy-Ellis, College of Social Work at the University of Utah (Faculty Page)
- Dr. Rob Moolman, Executive Director of Utah Pride Center
Mentally ill. Deviant. Diseased. And in need of a cure.
These were among the terms psychiatrists used to describe lesbians and gay men in the 1950s, 1960s, and early 1970s. According to the medical establishment, every gay person—no matter how well-adjusted—suffered from a mental disorder. And as long as lesbians and gay men were “sick,” progress toward equality was impossible. Cured chronicles the battle waged by a small group of activists who declared war against a formidable institution—and won a crucial victory in the modern movement for LGBTQ equality.
This feature-length documentary takes viewers inside the David-versus-Goliath struggle that led the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to remove homosexuality from its manual of mental illnesses in 1973. Viewers meet the key players who achieved this victory, along with allies and opponents within the APA. The film illuminates the strategy and tactics that led to this pivotal yet largely unknown moment. Indeed, following the Stonewall uprising of 1969, the campaign that culminated in the APA’s decision marks the first major step on the path to first-class citizenship for LGBTQ Americans.
While Cured is indisputably about science, medicine, and politics, at its core this is a film about activism and the process of social change. It features a diverse group of crusaders with stubborn dedication and big personalities who came together at a crossroads in LGBTQ history. Their tenacity, resourcefulness, and ingenuity brought about a change that transformed not only LGBTQ people’s perceptions of themselves but also the social fabric of America.
“[A] fascinating doc about doctors who took too long to heal themselves… Scintillates… So many vibrant and articulate participants [recall] their part in a battle that did a great deal to change longstanding (and not yet extinct) prejudices.” — STEPHEN FARBER, THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER
“[A] striking documentary. One of the 5 best LGBTQ+ films we watched [at Outfest].” — DAVID OLIVER, USA TODAY
“Suspenseful and furnishing a slam-dunk case about the landmark importance of this event, Cured is probably the best LGBTQ documentary of the year.” — BRIAN BROMBERGER, BAY AREA REPORTER
“A fascinating new documentary. Doctors once considered homosexuality an illness; Cured celebrates heroes who proved otherwise.” — DAVID REDDISH, QUEERTY