LGBTQ+ History Month: Important Historical Moments You Might Not Know

LGBTQ+ History Month: Important Historical Moments You Might Not Know

Posted By Javay- The Millennial Sexpert
LGBTQ+ History Month: Important Historical Moments You Might Not Know

For a lot of people when they think of LGBTQ+ history they think of Pride month and well-known events like the Pride riots and same-sex marriage, but did you know that October is actually LGBTQ+ history month? It is and there are so many historical moments for the LGBTQ+ community that should be more common knowledge than they are, so we are going to dive into some of those in honor of the month and the great strides that have been made for the community at large.

Why October?

You may be wondering why LGBTQ+ History Month is in October when Pride is typically celebrated in June, and it would make more sense for them to be together. The main reason that October is LGBTQ+ history month is because it coincides with National Coming Out Day. National Coming Out Day was recognized before LGBTQ+ History Month and so that is how it ended up being October. And in regard to why it isn’t during Pride month in June, think about it, what does it say when you jam everything relating to an identity or community in one month rather than giving them all their time to shine? It is very dismissive and can be harmful, so having an LGBTQ+ history month separate from Pride month is important.

The History of Language

Though we use terms like lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender regularly, they have not always been common or widely used. Each word came to recognition at different times in history and has had some impact on the LGBTQ+ community and the ways in which members of it relate to and understand each other. Lesbian was the first term to be established in 1732 in the novel, The Toast, by William King. Homosexual was first used in 1869 and though it is not common language nowadays it was very commonly used historically. Bisexual came to be used in language in 1894 from Germany. Though gay had been used for many years to mean happy, it wasn’t used to mean same-sex relationships between men until 1955. Previously the word transsexual was commonplace, but the shift to use transgender happened in 1965.

Media Representations

You have probably heard that representation matters and that goes for all identities including LGBTQ+ identities. There have been many strides made for the representation of LGBTQ+ folks and there is still room to grow, but it is important to recognize some groundbreaking representations in media. The first on-screen kiss of LGBTQ characters was in 1991 on LA Law where a lesbian woman kissed a straight woman. Will & Grace was the first TV sitcom that put gay life front and center with the two gay men characters of Will and Jack. In more recent years the representation has extended beyond just gays and lesbians with shows centering transgender characters, such as Transparent and Sense8, and bisexual characters in Siren and Pretty Little Liars

There is so much LGBTQ+ history that is not as taught or widely known as heterosexual history, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t an LGBTQ+ history. It may take some more effort on our part individually, but there is so much to learn about LGBTQ+ history and it can offer a lot of hope that things do and will get better, so don’t be afraid to go out and learn more on your own. Hopefully, in the future, LGBTQ+ history will be taught just as much as other types of history.

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