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June is LGBTQIA+ Pride Month!

Pierce Library invites you to join us in celebrating LGBTQIA+ Pride Month! Pride is a time to celebrate the diverse and unique experiences of LGBTQIA+ folks, remember the activism that has helped achieve greater LGBTQIA+ rights and acceptance over the years, and take stock of how the movement still has room for improvement.

Pride is celebrated every June to commemorate the Stonewall Uprising of 1969, when a violent police raid of a popular gay bar in New York City called Stonewall Inn sparked nearly a week of spontaneous protests. While there was plenty of LGBTQ+ activism before 1969, Stonewall is widely regarded as a turning point and catalyst for the modern LGBTQIA+ rights movement in the United States. Read more about the Stonewall Uprising. The first Pride marches were held on June 28, 1970 on the one-year anniversary of Stonewall -- in fact, the Los Angeles Pride Parade is the longest-running permitted Pride Parade in the country!

Unfamiliar with any of the terminology in this guide? Check out this helpful LGBTQ+ Glossary.

Whether you are out and proud, in the closet, still figuring things out, or just want to learn something new, we are so glad you're here! Happy Pride, Brahmas!

Featured eBooks






Featured Print Books

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Nepantla: An Anthology for Queer Poets of Color

The first major literary anthology for queer poets of color in the United States. In 2014, Christopher Soto and Lambda Literary Foundation founded the online journal Nepantla, with the mission to nurture, celebrate, and preserve diversity within the queer poetry community, including contributions as diverse in style and form, as the experiences of QPOC in the United States. Now, Nepantla will appear for the first time in print as a survey of poetry by queer poets of color throughout U.S. history, including literary legends such as Audre Lorde, James Baldwin, June Jordan, Ai, and Pat Parker alongside contemporaries such as Natalie Diaz, Ocean Vuong, Danez Smith, Joshua Jennifer Espinoza, Robin Coste Lewis, Joy Harjo, Richard Blanco, Erika L. Sánchez, Jericho Brown, Carl Phillips, Tommy Pico, Eduardo C. Corral, Chen Chen, and more!

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Fat and Queer: An Anthology of Queer and Trans Bodies and Lives

We're here. We're queer. We're fat. This one-of-a-kind collection of prose and poetry radically explores the intersection of fat and queer identities, showcasing new, emerging and established queer and trans writers from around the world. Celebrating fat and queer bodies and lives, this book challenges negative and damaging representations of queer and fat bodies and offers readers ways to reclaim their bodies, providing stories of support, inspiration and empowerment. In writing that is intimate, luminous and emotionally raw, this anthology is a testament to the diversity and power of fat queer voices and experiences, and they deserve to be heard.

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Brown and Gay in LA: The Lives of Immigrant Sons by Anthony Christian Ocampo

The stories of second-generation immigrant gay men coming of age in Los Angeles Growing up in the shadow of Hollywood, the gay sons of immigrants featured in Brown and Gay in LA could not have felt further removed from a world where queerness was accepted and celebrated. Instead, the men profiled here maneuver through family and friendship circles where masculinity dominates, gay sexuality is unspoken, and heterosexuality is strictly enforced. For these men, the path to sexual freedom often involves chasing the dreams while resisting the expectations of their immigrant parents--and finding community in each other. Ocampo also details his own story of reconciling his queer Filipino American identity and those of men like him. He shows what it was like for these young men to grow up gay in an immigrant family, to be the one gay person in their school and ethnic community, and to be a person of color in predominantly White gay spaces. Brown and Gay in LA is an homage to second-generation gay men and their radical redefinition of what it means to be gay, to be a man, to be a person of color, and, ultimately, what it means to be an American.

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The Thirty Names of Night: A Novel by Zeyn Joukhadar

Five years after a suspicious fire killed his ornithologist mother, a closeted Syrian American trans boy sheds his birth name and searches for a new one. He has been unable to paint since his mother's ghost has begun to visit him each evening. As his grandmother's sole caretaker, he spends his days cooped up in their apartment, avoiding his neighborhood masjid, his estranged sister, and even his best friend (who also happens to be his longtime crush). The only time he feels truly free is when he slips out at night to paint murals on buildings in the once-thriving Manhattan neighborhood known as Little Syria. One night, he enters the abandoned community house and finds the tattered journal of a Syrian American artist named Laila Z, who dedicated her career to painting the birds of North America. She famously and mysteriously disappeared more than sixty years before, but her journal contains proof that both his mother and Laila Z encountered the same rare bird before their deaths. In fact, Laila Z's past is intimately tied to his mother's--and his grandmother's--in ways he never could have expected. Even more surprising, Laila Z's story reveals the histories of queer and transgender people within his own community that he never knew. Realizing that he isn't and has never been alone, he has the courage to officially claim a new name: Nadir, an Arabic name meaning rare. As unprecedented numbers of birds are mysteriously drawn to the New York City skies, Nadir enlists the help of his family and friends to unravel what happened to Laila Z and the rare bird his mother died trying to save. Following his mother's ghost, he uncovers the silences kept in the name of survival by his own community, his own family, and within himself, and discovers the family that was there all along.

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Before We Were Trans: A New History of Gender by Kit Heyam

Today's narratives about trans people tend to feature individuals with stable gender identities that fit neatly into the categories of male or female. Those stories, while important, fail to account for the complex realities of many trans people's lives. Before We Were Trans illuminates the stories of people across the globe, from antiquity to the present, whose experiences of gender have defied binary categories. Blending historical analysis with sharp cultural criticism, trans historian and activist Kit Heyam offers a new, radically inclusive trans history, chronicling expressions of trans experience that are often overlooked, like gender-nonconforming fashion and wartime stage performance. Before We Were Trans transports us from Renaissance Venice to seventeenth-century Angola, from Edo Japan to early America, and looks to the past to uncover new horizons for possible trans futures.

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The Queer Games Avant-Garde: How LGBTQ Game Makers Are Reimagining the Medium of Video Games by Bo Ruberg

In The Queer Games Avant-Garde, Bo Ruberg presents twenty interviews with twenty-two queer video game developers whose radical, experimental, vibrant, and deeply queer work is driving a momentous shift in the medium of video games. Speaking with insight and candor about their creative practices as well as their politics and passions, these influential and innovative game makers tell stories about their lives and inspirations, the challenges they face, and the ways they understand their places within the wider terrain of video game culture. Their insights go beyond typical conversations about LGBTQ representation in video games or how to improve "diversity" in digital media. Instead, they explore queer game-making practices, the politics of queer independent video games, how queerness can be expressed as an aesthetic practice, the influence of feminist art on their work, and the future of queer video games and technology. These engaging conversations offer a portrait of an influential community that is subverting and redefining the medium of video games by placing queerness front and center.

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My Government Means to Kill Me: A Novel by Rasheed Newson

A fierce and riveting queer coming-of-age story, following the personal and political awakening of a young gay Black man in 1980s NYC, from the television drama writer and producer of The Chi, Narcos, and Bel-Air. Born into a wealthy Black Indianapolis family, Earl 'Trey' Singleton III leaves his overbearing parents and their expectations behind by running away to New York City with only a few dollars in his pocket. In the City, Trey meets up with a cast of characters that change his life forever--from civil rights leader Bayard Rustin, who he meets in a Harlem bathhouse, to his landlord, Fred Trump, who he clashes with and outfoxes. He volunteers at a renegade home hospice for AIDS patients, and after being put to the test by gay rights activist Larry Kramer and civil rights leader Dorothy Cotton, becomes a founding member of the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power (ACT UP). Along the way Trey attempts to navigate past traumas and searches for ways to maintain familial relationships--all while seeking the meaning of life in the midst of so much death. Vibrant, humorous, and fraught with entanglements, Rasheed Newson's My Government Means to Kill Me is an exhilarating, fast-paced, coming-of-age story that lends itself to a larger discussion about what it means for a young, gay, Black man in the mid-1980s to come to terms with his role in the midst of a political and social reckoning.

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The Rainbow: After the Storm by Michael Rosenfeld

A detailed story of how social science contributed to gay rights gains in the courts. For most of American history, public opinion was strongly opposed to gay rights. Marriage equality had negligible public support throughout the 1970s-1980s. Yet, starting in the 1990s, American opinion toward marriage equality changed more than any other attitude in the history of American public opinion. In Rainbow after the Storm, Michael J. Rosenfeld explains how attitudes toward marriage equality changed so much, and how public opinion change drove change at the ballot box and in the courts. As Rosenfeld shows, in three crucial same-sex marriage trials, the supporters and opponents of marriage equality faced off. Rosenfeld describes the struggles of the same-sex couples who, with few resources at their disposal, and against formidable state and religious opponents, sued for the right to marry and eventually won. The first comprehensive analysis of the marriage equality movement in the U.S., The Rainbow: After the Storm tells the stories of key individuals, the court battles, and the society-wide explanations for the rapid liberalization of attitudes toward gay rights that made same-sex marriage the law of the U.S. sooner than almost anyone thought was possible.

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How to Survive a Plague: The Inside Story of How Citizens and Science Tamed AIDS by David France

A riveting, powerful telling of the story of the grassroots movement of activists, many of them in a life-or-death struggle, who seized upon scientific research to help develop the drugs that turned HIV from a mostly fatal infection to a manageable disease. Ignored by public officials, religious leaders, and the nation at large, and confronted with shame and hatred, this small group of men and women chose to fight for their right to live by educating themselves and demanding to become full partners in the race for effective treatments. Around the globe, 16 million people are alive today thanks to their efforts. Expansive yet richly detailed, this is an insider's account of a pivotal moment in the history of American civil rights. Powerful, heart-wrenching, and finally exhilarating, How to Survive a Plague is destined to become an essential part of the literature of AIDS.

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You Made a Fool of Death with Your Beauty: A Novel by Akwaeke Emezi

Feyi Adekola wants to learn how to be alive again. It's been five years since the accident that killed the love of her life and she's almost a new person now--an artist with her own studio and sharing a brownstone apartment with her ride-or-die best friend, Joy, who insists it's time for Feyi to ease back into the dating scene. Feyi isn't ready for anything serious, but a steamy encounter at a rooftop party cascades into a whirlwind summer she could have never imagined: a luxury trip to a tropical island, decadent meals in the glamorous home of a celebrity chef, and a major curator who wants to launch her art career. She's even started dating the perfect guy, but their new relationship might be sabotaged before it has a chance by the overwhelming desire Feyi feels every time she locks eyes with the one person in the house who is most definitely off-limits--his father. This new life she asked for just got a lot more complicated, and Feyi must begin her search for real answers. Who is she ready to become? Can she release her past and honor her grief while still embracing her future? And, of course, there's the biggest question of all--how far is she willing to go for a second chance at love? Akwaeke Emezi's vivid and passionate writing takes us deep into a world of possibility and healing, and the constant bravery of choosing love against all odds.

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The Deviant's War: The Homosexual vs. the United States of America by Eric Cervini

In 1957, Frank Kameny, an astronomer working for the US Defense Department in Hawaii, received a summons to report immediately to Washington, D.C. The Pentagon had reason to believe he was a homosexual, and after a series of humiliating interviews, Kameny--like countless gay men and women for before him--was promptly dismissed from his government job. Unlike many others, though, he fought back. Eric Cervini tells the story of what followed in this pathbreaking history of an early champion of gay liberation. Based on firsthand accounts, recently declassified FBI records, and forty thousand personal documents, The Deviant's War, the first book of LGBTQ+ history to hit the New York Times best seller list in over 25 years, is a story of America (and Washington) at a cultural and sexual crossroads, of shocking, byzantine public battles with Congress, of FBI informants, murder, betrayal, sex, love--and ultimately victory.

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Nonbinary Gender Identities: History, Culture, Resources by Charlie McNabb

Nonbinary gender identities are those that fall outside the traditional binary of "man" and "woman." These include genderfluid, androgynous, genderqueer, and a multitude of other identity terms, some of which overlap. Although there have always been people who identify outside the gender binary, only recently have they gained popular media attention. Despite some visibility, however, nonbinary gender identities are poorly understood by the general public. It is critically important for gender minorities to find themselves in the media that they consume. Just as important is the need for those outside the minority community to understand and appreciate them. Nonbinary gender identities are represented in books and other media, but these resources prove difficult to locate, as classification vocabulary doesn't evolve as quickly as community language. Reference sources identified include archives and special collections, theses and dissertations, key journals, and related organizations and associations. This timely resource--the first reference on nonbinary gender identities--offers an accessible entry into researching this topic. Written by a nonbinary scholar and librarian, this guide includes valuable appendixes that will aid every researcher and writer: a glossary of the rich vocabulary emerging from nonbinary communities; a guide to pronoun usage; a primer on sex, sexuality, and gender; and Library of Congress Classification information.

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A Few Good Gays: The Gendered Compromises Behind Military Inclusion by Catherine Connell

The US military has done an about-face on gender and sexuality policy over the last decade, ending Don't Ask, Don't Tell, restrictions on women in combat, and transgender exclusion. Contrary to expectations, servicemembers have largely welcomed LGB inclusion--yet they continue to vociferously resist trans inclusion and the presence of women on the front lines. In the minds of many, the embodied "deficiencies" of cisgender women and trans people of all genders puts others--and indeed, the nation--at risk. In this book, Cati Connell identifies the homonormative bargain that underwrites these uneven patterns of reception and whose gains have come with significant concessions: a bargain that upholds and even exacerbates race, class, and gender inequality in the pursuit of sexual equality. Under the terms and conditions of the homonormative bargain, a select few are repatriated by military service, while gender-nonconforming queers, cis women, and trans people remain gender outlaws, assumed to endanger the institution--and indeed, the nation--by virtue of their physical and psychological inadequacies. What's more, this bargain remains a handshake deal; even the widespread support for open LGB service is highly conditional, revocable upon violation of the bargain. Despite the promise of inclusivity, in practice, the military has made room only for a "few good gays," to the exclusion of all others. But should inclusion be the goal? Incorporation into an apparatus of empire is a far cry from the radically deconstructionist, antiracist, and antiwar ambitions that once characterized gay liberation. The homonormative bargain squandered a great deal of that liberatory potential. How did we get from there to here? And where do we go next? In analyzing inclusion as a social movement aspiration, Connell shows that its steep price is exacted through the continued abjection of queered Others both at home and abroad.

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Rainbow Rainbow: Stories by Lydia Conklin

A fearless collection of stories that celebrate the humor, darkness, and depth of emotion of the queer and trans experience that's not typically represented: liminal or uncertain identities, queer conception, and queer joy. In this exuberant, prize-winning collection, queer, trans, and gender-nonconforming characters seek love and connection in hilarious and heartrending stories that reflect the complexity of our current moment. A nonbinary writer on the eve of top surgery enters into a risky affair during the height of COVID. A lesbian couple enlists a close friend as a sperm donor, plying him with a potent rainbow-colored cocktail. A lonely office worker struggling with their gender identity chaperones their nephew to a trans YouTube convention. And in the depths of a Midwestern winter, a sex-addicted librarian relies on her pet ferrets to help resist a relapse at a wild college fair. Capturing both the dark and lovable sides of the human experience, Rainbow Rainbow establishes debut author Lydia Conklin as a fearless new voice for their generation.

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Sporting Gender: The History, Science, and Stories of Transgender and Intersex Athletes by Joanna Harper

The 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games are likely to feature the first transgender athlete, a topic that will be highly contentious during the competition. But transgender and intersex athletes such as Laurel Hubbard, Tifanny Abreu, and Caster Semenya didn't just turn up overnight. Both intersex and transgender athletes have been newsworthy stories for decades. In Sporting Gender: The History, Science, and Stories of Transgender and Intersex Athletes, Joanna Harper provides an in-depth examination of why gender diverse athletes are so controversial. She not only delves into the history of these athletes and their personal stories, but also explains in a highly accessible manner the science behind their gender diversity and why the science is important for regulatory committees-and the general public-to consider when evaluating sports performance. Sporting Gender gives the reader a perspective that is both broad in scope and yet detailed enough to grasp the nuances that are central in understanding the controversies over intersex and transgender athletes. Featuring personal investigations from the author, who has had first-person access to some of the most significant recent developments in this complex arena, this book provides fascinating insight into sex, gender, and sports.

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