Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month is celebrated in June in the United States. LGBT Pride has historically been celebrated in June to commemorate the anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall Riots. On June 28, 1969 police raided the Stonewall Inn, a popular bar in New York City’s most liberal neighborhood, Greenwich Village.
Until the 1970s, the FBI kept lists of known homosexuals and frequently conducted raids on establishments catering to the gay community; in 1969 being gay was a criminal offense.
First person accounts of the June 28 riot, and subsequent upheaval in Greenwich, reported the atmosphere felt almost festive. For the first time in modern LGBT history, a group with no concrete mission or organization united without obvious leadership. Rather, onlookers and participants noted, it was instinctual. A community of oppressed people unified at that moment and said, “enough - we aren’t going away. We aren’t going to tolerate this abuse anymore.”
Following the riots, LGBT organizations formed across the country and became champions in the modern fight for LGBT civil rights. Over the last 50 years these groups have become more inclusive of racial diversity among the community as well as transgender, queer and other non-conforming gender and sexual identities. Various initiatives and growing support within LGBTQ+ communities and from the outside has propelled the LGBTQ+ struggle to the forefront of the United State’s modern civil rights movement.
As the civil rights movement gains attention and momentum, the LGBTQ+ interest genre in books for all ages has expanded. Authors of all orientations are writing stories for and about persons of non-conforming identities.
For especially popular and critically acclaimed works of Young Adult Fiction in LGBTQ+ interest, available at the Upper Arlington Public Library see the list below:
- Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Bengamin Alire Saenz
- The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth
- Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan
- You Know Me Well by Nina LaCour
- I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
- Gracefully Grayson by Ami Polonsky
- Beautiful Music for Ugly Children
- Freakboy by Kristin Elizabeth Clark
For a Non-Fiction book about the Stonewall riots written especially for teens:
For Non-fiction LGBTQ+ interest:
- Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out by Susan Kuklin
- The Gay Revolution: The Story of the Struggle by Lillian Faderman
- Out Law: What LGBT Youth Should Know About Their Legal Rights by Lisa Keen
- Queer: the Ultimate LGBT Guide for Teens by Kathy Belge and Marke Bieschke
- A Queer History of the United States by Michael Bronski