Suzan Daniel

Suzan Daniel

Let's turn our focus to Suzan Daniel, the founder of the LGBT movement in Belgium. Born in Brussels in 1918, this lesbian activist, whose real name is Suzanne De Pues, first encountered the Brussels gay scene in the 1930s. 

She devoted herself, among other things, to editorial activities in the non-conformist magazine "Le Rouge et le Noir" and to film reviews, becoming the first female film critic in Belgium. Her adoption of the name "Daniel" was inspired by French actress Danielle Darieux.

In 1953, she founded the first Belgian gay and lesbian association, the Centre Culturel de Belgique (CCB). This somewhat vague name reminds us that society at that time, was not quite as accepting of these issues as it is today. Her decision to write under a pseudonym, no doubt, reflected this too.

Quite quickly, the male members took control of the CCB, and Daniel was forced out.
She became more discreet in the second half of her life. In 1996, the Suzan Daniel Fund was created, becoming Belgium's first LGBT archive and documentation centre. At times considered too energetic, too modern, too progressive, she defined herself as "French in spirit, Flemish in heart, but above all a Brussels zinneke". She passed away in Laeken in 2007.