Celebrate LGBT History Month here at Senate House Library

Join us in celebrating LGBT History Month with our exciting new Queer Between The Covers exhibition and event season. It explores over 250 years of queer literature through 50 works from our collection.   

In February, we have a free film screening, London's award-winning LGBT Polari Literary Salon in the stunning Periodicals Room of Senate House Library and an evening talk with Gay's The Word Bookshop (the focus of the 2014 film Pride) in conversation with campaigner Graham McKerrow on being gay in the 80s (last few tickets remaining!).

Love in LGBT History Month

14 February 2018: Alternative Valentine's...Free lunchtime film screening of The Killing of Sister George (1968)

On Valentine's Day, there will be a free lunchtime film screening of The Killing of Sister George (1968); the first British film portraying the lives of two gay women. When the film by US Director Robert Aldrich was first released in Italy in 1969 the Committee for the Theatrical Review of the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities rated it has as VM18: not suitable for children under 18. In addition, the committee imposed the removal of some scenes.

22 February 2018: Polari Literary Salon with Neil Bartlett, VG Lee, Alexis Gregory & Paul Burston

London's award-winning LGBT literary salon Polari is coming to Senate House Library. Founded in 2007 by author Paul Burston, Polari showcases the best in established and emerging LGBT literary talent and is based in London's Southbank Centre. The salon also tours regularly, funded by Arts Council England, and has appeared at many festivals including Aye Write Glasgow, Belfast Book Festival, Books on Tyne, Homotopia and Manchester Literature Festival. The event features Neil Bartlett, VG Lee, Alex Gregory and Paul Burston, curator of Polari who will also be performing. 

27 February 2018: Saving Gay's The Word and Being Gay in the 80s - an evening talk

Hear Jim MacSweeney, manager of London's leading LGBT bookshop, Gay's The Word, in discussion with LGBT campaigner and journalist, Graham McKerrow, on the raid on the shop by H.M. Customs in 1984, which saw all of its foreign-published stock impounded. 

This event will also discuss the wider experience of being gay in 80s London and will also be the launch of the Library's audience response project, inviting all participants who identify as LGBTQ+ to talk about a work of literature which has had meaning in their lives.

Add the book that shaped your queer identity to our digital bookshelf:

As part of the Queer Between The Covers season, Senate House Library are inviting people to add the books that shaped their queer identity to the ‘digital community bookshelf’: https://www.senatehouselibrary.ac.uk/exhibitions-and-events/exhibitions/queer-between-covers/resources/bookshelf-gallery

And it doesn't stop in February...

The Queer Between The Covers exhibition and events season runs until 16 June 2018 so join us for more events and the exhibiton celebrating our queer literary history. Embracing forms from the pornographic to the melodramatic, the #QBTC18 season will demonstrate that despite a legal insistence on sexual activity, it has been between the covers of books that struggles for acceptance, liberation and repression have been waged.

For event listings, an exhibtion guide and much more, please go to: https://www.senatehouselibrary.ac.uk/exhibitions-and-events