Lambda Literary Awards (also known as the "Lammys") are awarded yearly by the US-based Lambda Literary Foundation to published works which celebrate or explore LGBT themes. Categories include Humor, Romance and Biography. To qualify, a book must have been published in the United States in the year current to the award. The Lambda Literary Foundation states that its mission is "to celebrate LGBT literature and provide resources for writers, readers, booksellers, publishers, and librarians - the whole literary community."[1] The awards were instituted in 1988.

Beginning in 2011, the Lambda Literary Awards also took over the Jim Duggins Outstanding Mid-Career Novelists' Prize, formerly presented by the Saints and Sinners Literary Festival. The award, endowed by academic and writer James Duggins, is presented annually to two LGBT writers, one male and one female.


Bisexual Community/Bi Any Other Name

In 1992, despite requests from the bisexual community for a more appropriate and inclusive category, the groundbreaking bisexual anthology Bi Any Other Name: Bisexual People Speak Out[2] by Loraine Hutchins and Lani Kaahumanu was forced to compete (and lose) in the category "Lesbian Anthology".[3] Additionally in 2005, "Directed by Desire: Collected Poems"[4] a posthumous collection of the bisexual Jamaican American writer June Jordan's work had to compete (and win) in the category "Lesbian Poetry".[5]

Led by BiNet USA,[6] the American Institute of Bisexuality and assisted by other bisexual organizations including BiPOL, Bialogue a group of bisexual rights activists launched a multi-year struggle that eventually culminated in 2006 with the addition of a Bisexual category.

Transgender Community/The Man Who Would Be Queen

In 2004, the book The Man Who Would Be Queen: The Science of Gender-Bending and Transsexualism by the highly controversial researcher J. Michael Bailey was announced as a finalist in the Transgender category of the 2003 Awards.

Transpeople immediately protested the nomination and gathered thousands of petition signatures in opposition within a few days. After the petition, the Foundation's judges examined the book more closely, decided that they considered it transphobic and removed it from their list of finalists.[7] Within a year the executive director who had initially approved of the book's inclusion resigned.[8] Executive Director Charles Flowers stated, "Further, the Bailey incident revealed flaws in our awards nomination process, which I have completely overhauled since becoming the foundation’s executive director in January 2006."[9]


  1. News and Announcements. Lambda Literary Foundation (2007). Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved on 2007-11-25.
  2. Bi Any Other Name: Bisexual People Speak Out Review. International Gay & Lesbian Review. Retrieved on 2007-11-25.
  3. 1991 Lambda Literary Awards Recipients. Lambda Literary Foundation. Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved on 2007-11-25.
  4. Directed by Desire: Collected Poems. Copper Canyon Press. Retrieved on 2011-10-16.
  5. 2005 Lambda Literary Awards Recipients. Lambda Literary Foundation. Retrieved on 2011-10-16.
  6. Curry, Wendy (2007). What makes a book bisexual?. Curried Spam. BiNet USA. Retrieved on 2007-11-25.
  7. Letellier, Patrick (16 March 2004). Group rescinds honor for disputed book. PlanetOut. Archived from the original on 2008-02-05. Retrieved on 2007-11-25.
  8. Schwartz, Nomi (16 June 2005). Lambda Literary Foundation Announces Major Changes. American Booksellers Association. Retrieved on 2007-11-25.
  9. Flowers, Charles (September 20, 2007). Letter to the New York Times, Sept 20, 2007.

See also

External links

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