Human Sexuality Collection

Human Sexuality Collection Support Cornell Library's work to protect and provide a better historical record of sexuality. Discover collections, travel grant opportunities, & more.
(6)

To see & use items: [email protected] To offer items: Curator Brenda Marston, [email protected]

Mission: We acquire and preserve primary sources that bolster and expand the historical record on human sexuality, especially areas poorly documented in the past, and we encourage research and engagement with these unique and rare items that can shed light on many topics.

Operating as usual

Today would have been photographer and filmmaker Honey Lee Cottrell’s 75th birthday. Her personal papers and photographs...
01/16/2021
Honey Lee Cottrell

Today would have been photographer and filmmaker Honey Lee Cottrell’s 75th birthday. Her personal papers and photographs are one of the RAD collections in Cornell University Library -- #HumanSexualityCollection #7822.

Cottrell (January 16, 1946 - September 21, 2015) contributed enormously to creating new space and possibilities for erotica defined and shaped by women. In this September 2015 recording, she talks with curator Brenda Marston about the meaning of her work.

Cornell Fashion + Textile Collection, note that at 11:50, she talks about a fashion photoshoot she did for On Our Backs, and comments: "wow, why don't we just do this whole photo fashion exhibit of these folks, here, then?"

#honeyleecottrell #humansexualitycollection #lesbianphotography #OnOurBacks #womenserotica #CornellRAD

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o30jpQIwcBw

September 6, 2015. Talking about her vision for the first issue of On Our Backs and the psycho-sexual subway map of urban lesbian life she created, as we loo...

Honey Lee Cottrell would have been 75 today. On her birthday, the Cornell Fashion + Textile Collection and Human Sexuali...
01/16/2021

Honey Lee Cottrell would have been 75 today. On her birthday, the Cornell Fashion + Textile Collection and Human Sexuality Collection are indulging in a #HoneyLeeCottrell #lovefest.

Today would have been photographer (and fashion icon!) Honey Lee Cottrell’s 75th birthday - her personal papers and photographs are archived in the Human Sexuality Collection - one of the RAD collections in the Cornell University Library 📸 📚 Honey Lee Cottrell papers, 1950-2015 collection number 7822 📸 📖 We’ve included some of our favorite digitized photos of Honey Lee and her personal style (and the last photo thanks to Susie Bright 🛶) #honeyleecottrell #humansexualitycollection #lesbianphotography #CornellRAD

Thank you to our AUL Tamar Dougherty for inviting me to participate on this panel exploring how feminism can improve the...
12/08/2020
Building Better Book Feminisms

Thank you to our AUL Tamar Dougherty for inviting me to participate on this panel exploring how feminism can improve the study of book history, in which I give my definition of feminism and how it has improved my work as a curator, and through which I happily discovered that my AUL agrees with me that vibrators are books! Sponsored by The Bibliographical Society of America and Cornell University Library.

Recent years have seen a surge of interest in feminist bibliography, sparked primarily by work by Kate Ozment and Sarah Werner, drawing on a 1998 piece by Le...

On World AIDS Day, I pay tribute to Robert Lynch, called Larry by his family, born on 14 September 1947 near Enfield, in...
12/01/2020

On World AIDS Day, I pay tribute to Robert Lynch, called Larry by his family, born on 14 September 1947 near Enfield, in Halifax County, eastern North Carolina. In 1987 he became aware of having contracted AIDS. Lynch died on 13 March 1989.

In the early 1980s, Lynch had returned to the area of his birth and became involved in studying and documenting the art created by his Black and Haliwa-Saponi community. He referred to the art, which included wood sculpture and quilts, as "outsider art." I’m honored to be able to share today some of the North Carolina quilts that he photographed and valued so much.

Robert Lynch Papers, #7320. @cornell_library #CornellRAD

#worldaidsday #quilts #outsiderart #blackartists #blackquilters #indigenousartists #indigenousquilters

On World AIDS Day, I pay tribute to Robert Lynch, called Larry by his family, born on 14 September 1947 near Enfield, in...
12/01/2020

On World AIDS Day, I pay tribute to Robert Lynch, called Larry by his family, born on 14 September 1947 near Enfield, in Halifax County, eastern North Carolina.

In a diary, he notes that when he left Rocky Mount for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1965, "it was from the colored waiting section." He attended Harvard Law School and then practiced corporate and securities law in New York City. While there, he became involved with the Dance Theatre of Harlem. In 1975, he returned to rural North Carolina. His writing and photographs reveal his strong connection to the land and people of his birth and show his love of its art, which he called “outsider art.” He explores in depth how his family negotiated racial identities — "some passed, some called themselves indians, and some blacks” — and he is also preoccupied by what he refers to as "lust" and his desire for love.

In 1987 he became aware of having contracted AIDS. His diaries include poignant testimony to the experience of this illness in the late 1980s and his contemplation of mortality. Lynch died on 13 March 1989.

In other posts today, I will share some of the quilts made in North Carolina that he photographed and valued so much.

Further, I pay tribute to Phil McCray, a writer and artist as well as the archivist who described and processed Lynch’s papers. The guide he created to these papers stands as an exemplar. Phil’s respect and empathy for Robert’s life path reverberate through the guide, evident in the details he brings to researchers’ attention.

I think of you both today. RIP.

Photographs of Robert Lynch from Cornell University Library Cornell University Library - Rare and Manuscript Collections #7320 Box 24, folders 1, 3.
#worldaidsday #quilts #outsiderart #archivists #CornellRAD

On the way home from Cornell University Library, I was listening to a Background Briefing story about how remarkable cur...
11/19/2020
Turmoil In Thailand As Subjects Question the King's Excesses and Entitlement

On the way home from Cornell University Library, I was listening to a Background Briefing story about how remarkable current political unrest in Thailand is given what schools there teach about the country’s royalty. At the end, I discovered I’d been listening to Cornell History Department professor Tamara Loos. Thanks for the relevant history! (Prof. Loos has also contributed to our collection.)

Background Briefing goes far beyond the headlines and deep under the radar to bring forward truths unheard elsewhere in American media. Background Briefing features international and national news, ex

#Repost @cornell.lgbtrc・・・This week is #TransAwarenessWeek, and Friday is #TransgenderDayofRemembrance. ⁠⁠On Thursday ev...
11/19/2020

#Repost @cornell.lgbtrc
・・・
This week is #TransAwarenessWeek, and Friday is #TransgenderDayofRemembrance. ⁠

On Thursday evening at 7 PM, join the Cornell University LGBT Resource Center, the Ithaca College Center for LGBT Education, Outreach and Services, and the Ithaca Transgender Group for a virtual evening of peace, hope, and understanding as we honor and celebrate the lives of those transgender people who've been senselessly taken from us during the past year.⁠

Links to preregister for the Zoom meeting or watch a live stream on Facebook are both in @cornell.lgbtrc bio.

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network pin-back button.#veteransday #veterans #lgbtveterans #baldeagle #pinbackbuttons #sl...
11/11/2020

Servicemembers Legal Defense Network pin-back button.

#veteransday #veterans #lgbtveterans
#baldeagle
#pinbackbuttons
#sldn
#CornellRAD @cornell_library

“Honor Every Veteran” is the message on this donation canister from the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN), a n...
11/11/2020

“Honor Every Veteran” is the message on this donation canister from the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN), a non-partisan, non-profit organization that provided free legal assistance to service members and veterans affected by the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” law and the ban on open transgender service.

The records of OutServe-SLDN , 1993-2013, are available for research.

#humansexualitycollection #7821 box 14, MU-1928.
#veteransday
#transgenderhistory
#lgbtqhistory
#CornellRAD Cornell University Library

For a group costume, go as Sarah Bernhardt in her multiple poses for her role in Edmond Rostand’s L’Aiglon. He called he...
10/31/2020

For a group costume, go as Sarah Bernhardt in her multiple poses for her role in Edmond Rostand’s L’Aiglon. He called her "the queen of the pose and the princess of the gesture.” There are plenty of poses for each member of your group, and you could call yourselves a Collective of Bernhardts.

Run and get your green sashes and please send me a picture of your Bernhardt outfits!

Named “the Divine Sarah” by her fans, she was an international star. Her birthday was October 22 or 23, 1844, and she lived 78 years.
#humansexualitycollection #archivalcostumes #Halloween2020 #CornellRAD Cornell University Library
New acquisition for Postcards of female and male impersonators and cross-dressing, #7778.

Seeking historic inspiration for a last-minute #halloween2020 costume? I submit Ms. Sarah Bernhardt in L’Aiglon circa 19...
10/30/2020

Seeking historic inspiration for a last-minute #halloween2020 costume? I submit Ms. Sarah Bernhardt in L’Aiglon circa 1905. Take on a “trouser role” as Bernhardt did on stage starting in the 1860s.

These postcards have not been added to our digital collections yet, so consider this a personal gift from your friendly #humansexualitycollection curator! You’re the first to see it, so there won’t be lots of copies. You can stand out and turn heads at your virtual Halloween party!

@cornell_library #CornellRAD #ArchivalCostumes #SarahBernhardt #trouserrole

Today, I’d like to praise and bring attention to the Cornell University and Indigenous Dispossession Project and its blo...
10/12/2020

Today, I’d like to praise and bring attention to the Cornell University and Indigenous Dispossession Project and its blog. Prof. Kurt Jordan, Director of Cornell’s American Indian and Indigenous Studies Program (AIISP) explained on the introduction to the blog: “As many academic institutions built upon slave labor have done, Cornell has a moral obligation to acknowledge that its origins were based on a continental-scale program of Indigenous dispossession, and educate its faculty, staff, students, and the general public about this history and why it requires action in the present.”

AIISP has submitted the land acknowledgement shown here to Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ’ (Cayuga Nation) leaders for their consideration and approval.

See the blog: https://blogs.cornell.edu/cornelluniversityindigenousdispossession/category/blog-introduction/

#CayugaLand #Gayogo̱hó꞉nǫ’ #CayugaNation
#CornellRAD Cornell University Library #aaisp #dispossession #reckoningwiththepast

On this curator’s first day back to @cornelluniversity campus since COVID/March, I visited Prof. Green’s exhibition-in-p...
09/29/2020

On this curator’s first day back to @cornelluniversity campus since COVID/March, I visited Prof. Green’s exhibition-in-progress, “GREEN ARMOR.”

Exciting as all her exhibitions: I saw 1960 Nigerian cloth, vintage bathing suits, silk jackets, and more!

The exhibit idea is:
“We are contemporaries to catastrophe. Over 200,000 U.S. deaths and counting. Green has become our ‘new normal,’ a color we must aspire to when; the United States Government has failed to mitigate or respond appropriately to the call of the people - what can we do? We adorn ourselves in the power of green: suits, coats, wraps, gowns, and socks and shoes, a modern human’s armor to the elements, from the eyes, to the feet. We can celebrate the shelter these objects provide, through the lens and unifying pizazz of the ubiquitous, culture crossing, looks pretty good on everyone: GREEN. With inclusion of ‘eye protection’ – the pince-nez (a green glass lens) the twinkle in our eyes, and for the weary, a physical lens with which to relax in the sun.”

Ashlee Marie Preston today. Thanks, Cornell LGBT Resource Center!“If we aren’t actively working to dismantle all systems...
09/16/2020

Ashlee Marie Preston today. Thanks, Cornell LGBT Resource Center!

“If we aren’t actively working to dismantle all systems of oppression simultaneously, we are passively sustaining them.”
— A Conversation with Ashlee Marie Preston

25 years ago today, Xena: Warrior Princess first aired. With her sidekick Gabrielle intent on documenting their travels,...
09/04/2020

25 years ago today, Xena: Warrior Princess first aired. With her sidekick Gabrielle intent on documenting their travels, Xena became a lesbian icon.
Cover of HX for Her, June 4, 1997, issue 22.
In Cornell University Library, Human Sexuality Collection HQ75 .H96
Cornell University Library - Rare and Manuscript Collections
#CornellRAD

A duet of transformations! A 1915 French photograph by V. Lavaux of a woman dressed as a man and a man dressed as a woma...
08/05/2020

A duet of transformations! A 1915 French photograph by V. Lavaux of a woman dressed as a man and a man dressed as a woman. Another of our digital images now easier than ever to find. In guides to our collections, you will start to see links that take you directly to any digital images of items in the collection.

Digital access to our hundreds of photo postcards of female and male impersonators makes research possible independent of access to our buildings. In addition to researching the history of gender, the text on these postcards from numerous countries provides interesting possibilities for language instruction and opportunities to sharpen one’s skills in reading cursive scripts.
#CornellRAD Cornell University Library - Rare and Manuscript Collections Cornell University Library

https://digital.library.cornell.edu/catalog/ss:24415888AA

#GoodNewsMonday You will now find improved access to digitized images from the Cornell Human Sexuality Collection. Take ...
08/03/2020

#GoodNewsMonday
You will now find improved access to digitized images from the Cornell Human Sexuality Collection. Take this image of Robert Bertin in the character of La Belle Otero in approximately 1907. If you found this in the listing for our collection of postcards of female and male impersonators and cross-dressing (collection #7778 https://rmc.library.cornell.edu/EAD/htmldocs/RMM07778.html), you will now find a link to the image itself. Believe me: this is WAY simpler than we could offer before. Enjoy searching our guides and increasingly being able to tap on a link to see the objects.

More on this image by photographer J. Bioletto:
In the long drag tradition of impersonating specific female icons, here Monsuier Bertin performs Agustina del Carmen Otero Iglesias (1868 - 1965), or as she became known, La Belle Otero. Born in Galicia, Spain, Otero began working as a maid before she was 10 years old and at 14 started singing and dancing in Lisbon. At 20, she moved to Marseilles, France and created the character La Belle Otero, portraying herself as an Andalusian gypsy (Roma). Known for her numerous love affairs with royal men including Kaiser Wilhelm II, Prince Albert I of Monaco, King Edward VII, and others, she was a famous and intriguing female performer. An audience in 1907 would recognize a good impersonation of her character.

You can decide "who wore it best" yourself, by comparing the photo of Monsieur Bertin to the image of La Belle Otero herself.
#RobertBertin #LaBelleOtero

Too far?In this French postcard from around 1905, a woman dressed in men’s clothes kisses a woman in traditional women’s...
07/06/2020

Too far?

In this French postcard from around 1905, a woman dressed in men’s clothes kisses a woman in traditional women’s clothes while a priest looks on in dismay, uttering “but they go too far!”

#internationalkissingday
#humansexualitycollection #7778 B1 F10 Item 83.

#Frenchkisses #frenchhistory🇫🇷 #historyofsexuality
#CornellRAD Cornell University Library

It’s #internationalkissingday — who knew?Hugh Morris’ 1936 “The Art of Kissing” covers lots of ground, from “why people ...
07/06/2020

It’s #internationalkissingday — who knew?

Hugh Morris’ 1936 “The Art of Kissing” covers lots of ground, from “why people kiss” and “approved methods of kissing” to “variation kisses are the spice of love.”

#humansexualitycollection GT2640 .M67

#ConellRAD Cornell University Library
#iglibraries

I don’t know who made it #internationalkissingday, but we do have plenty to share about kissing!This image of kissing un...
07/06/2020

I don’t know who made it #internationalkissingday, but we do have plenty to share about kissing!

This image of kissing under mistletoe is in a 1936 book by Hugh Morris, The Art of Kissing.

History.com says that mistletoe’s “romantic overtones most likely starts with the Celtic Druids of the 1st century A.D. Because mistletoe could blossom even during the frozen winter, the Druids came to view. It as a sacred symbol of vivacity.”

In the 18th century “... the kissing tradition appears to have first caught on among servants in England before spreading to the middle classes. As part of the early custom, men were allowed to steal a kiss from any woman caught standing under the mistletoe.”

Today, positive consent should be part of the equation — no stealing of kisses.

#mistletoe #kisses #consent #historyofsexuality #CornellRAD Cornell University Library

Joining worldwide #VirtualPride2020, Cornell Library will be sharing photos from our collections of Pride marches and de...
06/28/2020

Joining worldwide #VirtualPride2020, Cornell Library will be sharing photos from our collections of Pride marches and demonstrations. Here are some of Jessica Tanzer’s images of the June 24, 1990 San Francisco march. At the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Riots and 5 decades of ensuing activism, we are in the midst of crises in public health and systemic racism. Protests against discrimination and police brutality and demands for public health have histories. Excited to learn more about them? Do you know about Pink Saturday? Read on!

Cornell Virtual Pride 2020.

Joining worldwide #VirtualPride2020, Cornell Library will be sharing photos from our collections of Pride marches and demonstrations. Here are some of Jessica Tanzer’s images of the June 24, 1990 San Francisco march. At the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Riots and 5 decades of ensuing activism, we are in the midst of crises in public health and systemic racism. Protests against discrimination and police brutality and demands for public health have histories. Excited to learn more about them? Do you know about Pink Saturday? Read on!

Cornell Virtual Pride 2020.

Pride is 50.
06/28/2020

Pride is 50.

Joining worldwide #VirtualPride2020, Cornell Library will be sharing photos from our collections of Pride marches and de...
06/26/2020

Joining worldwide #VirtualPride2020, Cornell Library will be sharing photos from our collections of Pride marches and demonstrations. Here are some of Jessica Tanzer’s images of the June 24, 1990 San Francisco march. At the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Riots and 5 decades of ensuing activism, we are in the midst of crises in public health and systemic racism. Protests against discrimination and police brutality and demands for public health have histories. Excited to learn more about them? Do you know about Pink Saturday? Read on!

Cornell Virtual Pride 2020.

Joining worldwide #VirtualPride2020, Cornell Library will be sharing photos from our collections of Pride marches and demonstrations. Here are some of Jessica Tanzer’s images of the June 24, 1990 San Francisco march. At the 51st anniversary of the Stonewall Riots and 5 decades of ensuing activism, we are in the midst of crises in public health and systemic racism. Protests against discrimination and police brutality and demands for public health have histories. Excited to learn more about them? Do you know about Pink Saturday? Read on!

Cornell Virtual Pride 2020.

Address

2B Kroch Library, Cornell University Library
Ithaca, NY
14853-5302

General information

Tweets @HumSexCollects Instagram @CornellSexCollects

Opening Hours

Monday 09:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 09:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 09:00 - 17:00
Thursday 09:00 - 17:00
Friday 09:00 - 17:00
Saturday 13:00 - 17:00

Telephone

+6072553530

Alerts

Be the first to know and let us send you an email when Human Sexuality Collection posts news and promotions. Your email address will not be used for any other purpose, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Contact The University

Send a message to Human Sexuality Collection:

Videos

Nearby universities


Other Ithaca universities

Show All

Comments

Hi im antonio s eguia jr im Gay and im from philipines wanna chat u robert
Collaboration of 2 Cornell archives: human sexuality and fashion industry......love that women and machinery image.....something queer / labor here
Hii