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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

LGBTQ Subject Headings Search for Books, Media, and Other Resources in the UIUC Library Catalog: Home

This is a list of LGBTQ subject headings which link to a subject search in the catalog.

About This Guide

The purpose of the guide is to help aid people researching LGBTQ topics, as well as to connect LGBTQ patrons with the materials here at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

This guide was created as a partnership between the UIUC LGBT Resource Center and the Social Sciences, Health, and Education Library by Jessica Colbert (jcolber2@illinois.edu, jessicalynncolbert@gmail.com).

How to Use This Guide

Each heading in this guide links to a subject search of that term in the VuFind catalog; simply click on the link to do the search. However, subject searches in VuFind act like a keyword search within the subjects, instead of only listing materials with that exact heading. For more precise results, go to the right side of the screen and limit your search using "Topics."

Some headings do not yield any search results. We have included them anyway 1) to show that the heading exists in order to aid research and give patrons the language to search in I-Share or WorldCat and 2) in case the library adds materials to the collection which use the heading in the future.

Headings that end with --Religious Aspects can further be narrowed down by the specific religion, such as Buddhism or Christianity. Simply type in the religion in the search bar after the searched term, or look for it in the "Topics" list.

Note: these headings are NOT for database searches. Each database has its own unique subject headings. When in a database, look for something that says "Subject terms" or "Thesaurus." Also, most databases will auto-suggest terms while you type; these are subject headings!

If you need help developing language for searching in databases, contact a librarian!

A Note on Language

Some of the terms in this guide might be outdated, incorrect, or harmful. Subject headings are slow to change, and librarians across the country work to make them better.

Outdated terms might still be in use on certain materials, and can also be helpful for historical research.

The same idea might be expressed in a few different subjects headings; this particularly happens with Gay Men vs. Gays, and variations of those terms. If you cannot find what you need under one heading, try another!

The heading Gays can include materials about gay men and lesbians, but might not necessarily.

Just because these headings exist and are supposed to be used a certain way does not mean that librarians have assigned them correctly.

Gender Studies and Multicultural Services

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Cindy Ingold
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The subject headings in this guide are taken from the Queer LCSH guide created by Netanel Ganin. You can reach him by email at

NetGanin@gmail.com or find him on Twitter @OpOnions.