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Celebrating LGBTQIA+ communities

As the LGBT+ community commemorates 50 years since the first Pride took place in the UK, we highlight some of the books featured in our Pride Collection and how we're marking Pride Month 2022.


Cambridge shield with Pride flag

In June 1969, the ongoing harassment of gay and transgender people at bars and clubs in New York City, USA sparked a six-day protest. This catalytic moment in the global gay rights movement is now marked by Pride events around the world. We are proud to be one of the sponsors of the Pride event being held in Cambridge this year as the LGBT+ community commemorates 50 years since the first Pride took place in the UK.  

Pride month is a celebration of people coming together in love and friendship, with parties and colourful parades held alongside educational and awareness-raising events. Part of the conversation is about how far LGBTQIA+ rights have progressed, whilst also recognising the challenges still faced by LGBTQIA+ communities globally. The books featured in our Pride Collection explore and discuss a range of LGBTQIA+ issues and topics that help to further that conversation. 


Female Husbands: A Trans History (2021) offers a dynamic, varied, and complex history of the LGBTQ past. Throughout the book, author Jen Manion details the lives of female husbands in Anglo-America from the eighteenth through the turn of the twentieth century. In the video below, Manion shares extracts and stories from the book.   

Long before people identified as transgender or lesbian, there were female husbands and the women who loved them. Female husbands - people assigned female who transed gender, lived as men, and married women - were true queer pioneers.

 Jen Manion  


Sex, gender, and sexuality are constructed categories that continue to evolve—interconnecting, overlapping, and intertwining in the Japanese private and public spheres, and increasingly in cyberspace. 

Sabine Frühstück 

Gender and Sexuality in Modern Japan describes the ever-changing manifestations of sexes, genders, and sexualities in Japanese society from the 1860s to the present day. In a recent blog, author Sabine Frühstück explores what sense different people, institutions, and the state have made of the terms ‘sex’, ‘gender’, and ‘sexuality’ since the late nineteenth century 



Our Pride book collection features a number of titles from the Cambridge Companions – a series of authoritative guides, written by leading experts, offering accessible introductions to major writers, topics, and periods. 

  • The Cambridge Companion to Lesbian Literature examines literary representations of lesbian sexuality, identities, and communities, from the medieval period to the present, and delivers insight into the variety of traditions that have shaped the present landscape of lesbian literature.  
  • Examining the connections between LGBTQ populations and American literature from the late eighteenth to twenty-first centuries is the award-winning Cambridge Companion to American Gay and Lesbian Literature.  
  • The Cambridge Companion to Queer Studies reflects the newest areas of queer studies education, including queer of colour critique, indigenous studies, disability studies, and transgender studies, and familiarises readers with the history of queer literary and cultural studies, as well as the most current debates.  
  • Cambridge Companion to Gay and Lesbian Writing offers readers an introduction to the range of debates that inform studies of works by lesbian and gay writers and of literary representations of same-sex desire and queer identities. Authors discussed throughout the book range from Henry James, E. M. Forster and Gertrude Stein to Sarah Waters and Carol Ann Duff. Chapters explore different topics such as transgender fiction and politics, lesbian and gay love poetry, homosexual writing on trial and psychoanalysis, homosexuality and modernism.  

As an organisation devoted to education, learning, and research, we believe that we can and should be a strong global voice for equality, diversity, inclusion and belonging (EDIB). 

For school learners, our UK exam board, OCR, recognises the need to do more to encourage the inclusion of LGBTQIA+ stories, events and issues in the curriculum. We are making progress, and were the first exam board to include the Stonewall riots of 1969 in our GCSE History A qualification, and our GCSE History B qualification has diversity as one of its guiding principles. In a recent LGBT+ History Month blog, one of our colleagues, reflecting personally on learning about LGBTQIA+ themes at school, said: “I wonder how much quicker I would have accepted my own identity if I had been shown examples of queer people throughout history.” We’re working on bringing more LGBTQIA+ histories into the classroom and making our exam processes more inclusive and diverse. 

For our people, our aim is to be an open and inclusive workplace where colleagues feel a sense of belonging, and a significant way we’re doing this is through our staff networks. Members of our Pride network work to raise awareness of LGBTQIA+ topics internally, help to shape our policy, procedure and products by collaborating with colleagues, and supporting external communities and groups around the world. This June, members of the Pride network have organised a programme of events for colleagues, including informal picnics and networking events, as well as panel discussions around topics such as creating LGBTQIA+ inclusive workplaces, steps we’re taking towards diversifying our author and editor community in our publishing, and how we’re working to improve the level of LGBTQIA+ inclusion and representation in our schools and exams content. 

How are you celebrating Pride Month? Join the conversation @CambPressAssess using #PrideMonth