Books for LGBTQIA+ History Month

By Colleen Rowe | October 6 2021 | Gender and Sexuality StudiesHistory

October is LGBTQIA+ History Month, dedicated to celebrating the diversity and history of the community. We are celebrating with books that shed light on the history of the community, with stories from inspiring individuals to the struggle for LGBTQIA+ rights to significant events that influenced LGBTQIA+ culture going forward.

Delve into our list of recommended titles:

 

Legendary Children

Here is a definitive deep-dive into queer history and culture with hit reality show RuPaul’s Drag Race as a touchstone. Each chapter is an examination of a specific aspect of the show that ties to a specific aspect of queer cultural history and/or the work of certain legendary figures in queer cultural history.

 

All In  

Here is an inspiring and intimate self-portrait of Billie Jean King and her ongoing commitment to fairness and social justice. She poignantly recalls the cultural backdrop of the years that encompass her brilliant tennis career, and the profound impact on her worldview by the LGBTQIA+ rights movement.

 

Speak Now

In Speak Now, a renowned legal scholar tells the definitive story of the trial that will stand as the most potent argument for marriage equality. In telling the story of Hollingsworth v. Perry, the groundbreaking federal lawsuit against Proposition 8, Kenji Yoshino has also written a paean to the vanishing civil trial.

 

The Queering of Corporate America

The Queering of Corporate America gives a surprising history of how corporate America joined the cause for LGBTQIA+ rights and complicates the narrative of corporate conservatism and provides insights into the future legal, political, and cultural implications of this unexpected relationship.

 

Stonewall Reader

The Stonewall Reader is a collection of first accounts, diaries, periodic literature, and articles from LGBTQ magazines and newspapers that documented both the years leading up to and the years following the riots. The anthology focuses on the events of 1969, the five years before, and the five years after.

 

The Engagement 

Here is the riveting story of the conflict over same-sex marriage in the United States—the most significant civil rights breakthrough of the new millennium. This richly detailed narrative follows the coast-to-coast conflict to shed light on every aspect of a political and legal controversy that divided Americans like no other.

 

Looking for Lorraine 

Here is a revealing portrait of one of the most gifted Black artists and intellectuals of the twentieth century. Although best-known for her work A Raisin in the Sun, her short life was full of extraordinary experiences and achievements, and she had an unflinching commitment to social justice.

 

Forcing the Spring

Here is the definitive account of five remarkable years in American civil rights history, when the United States experienced a tectonic shift on the issue of marriage equality, taking the reader from the Oval Office to the Supreme Court ruling, from state-by-state campaigns to an astounding shift in national public opinion.

 

A Queer History of the United States

Here is the first book to cover the entirety of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history, from pre-1492 to the present, abounding with startling examples of unknown or often ignored aspects of American history including the impact of new technologies on LGBTQIA+ life in the nineteenth century.

 

On Being Different

Just two years after the Stonewall riots, Merle Miller wrote a poignant essay for the New York Times Magazine entitled “What It Means To Be a Homosexual” in response to a homophobic article published in Harper’s Magazine. It carried the seed that would blossom into On Being Different—one of the earliest memoirs to affirm the importance of coming out.

 

They Called Us Enemy

Here is a graphic memoir recounting George Takei’s childhood imprisoned within American concentration camps during World War II. The book also delves into local California politics, including the assassination of Harvey Milk and the Marriage Equality Act, and the similarities between the modern threats to LGBTQIA+ rights and the past threats to Asian-American rights.


Find more titles on LGBTQIA+ History


Legendary Children
The First Decade of RuPaul's Drag Race and the Last Century of Queer Life
978-0-14-313462-6
A definitive deep-dive into queer history and culture with hit reality show RuPaul's Drag Race as a touchstone, by the creators of the pop culture blog Tom and Lorenzo NPR's Best Books of the Year 2020 pick A New York Times New & Noteworthy book One of Logo/NewNowNext's "11 Queer Books We Can't Wait to Read This Spring"
$18.00 US
Mar 03, 2020
Paperback
288 Pages
Penguin Books

All In
An Autobiography
978-1-101-94733-3
An inspiring and intimate self-portrait of the champion of equality that encompasses her brilliant tennis career, unwavering activism, and an ongoing commitment to fairness and social justice.
$30.00 US
Aug 17, 2021
Hardcover
496 Pages
Knopf

Speak Now
Marriage Equality on Trial
978-0-385-34882-9
A renowned legal scholar tells the definitive story of the trial that will stand as the most potent argument for marriage equality.
$17.00 US
Feb 16, 2016
Paperback
400 Pages
Crown

The Stonewall Reader
978-0-14-313351-3
For the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, an anthology chronicling the tumultuous fight for LGBTQ rights in the 1960s and the activists who spearheaded it, with a foreword by Edmund White.
$18.00 US
Apr 30, 2019
Paperback
336 Pages
Penguin Classics

The Engagement
America's Quarter-Century Struggle Over Same-Sex Marriage
978-1-5247-4873-9
The Engagement is the riveting story of the conflict over same-sex marriage in the United States—the most significant civil rights breakthrough of the new millennium.
$40.00 US
Jun 01, 2021
Hardcover
928 Pages
Pantheon


Forcing the Spring
Inside the Fight for Marriage Equality
978-0-14-312723-9
"[A] riveting legal drama... a spellbinder of a tale that, despite a finale reported round the world, manages to keep readers gripped until the very end." -- The Washington Post
$18.00 US
May 19, 2015
Paperback
496 Pages
Penguin Books

A Queer History of the United States
978-0-8070-4465-0
*2011 ALA Stonewall Israel Fishman Non-Fiction Award
$20.00 US
May 15, 2012
Paperback
312 Pages
Beacon Press

On Being Different
What It Means to Be a Homosexual
978-0-14-310696-8
The groundbreaking work on being homosexual in America—available again only from Penguin Classics and with a new foreword by Dan SavageOriginally published in 1971, Merle Miller’s On Being Different is a pioneering and thought-provoking book about being homosexual in the United States. Just two years after the Stonewall riots, Miller wrote a poignant essay for the New York Times Magazine entitled “What It Means To Be a Homosexual” in response to a homophobic article published in Harper’s Magazine. Described as “the most widely read and discussed essay of the decade,” it carried the seed that would blossom into On Being Different—one of the earliest memoirs to affirm the importance of coming out.For more than sixty-five years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,500 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
$14.00 US
Sep 25, 2012
Paperback
96 Pages
Penguin Classics

They Called Us Enemy
978-1-60309-450-4
New York Times Bestseller! A stunning graphic memoir recounting actor/author/activist George Takei's childhood imprisoned within American concentration camps during World War II. Experience the forces that shaped an American icon -- and America itself -- in this gripping tale of courage, country, loyalty, and love.
$19.99 US
Jul 16, 2019
Paperback
208 Pages
Top Shelf Productions

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