Skip to main content

Research Guides

Sexual and Gender Diversity Studies

Fisher Library

The following collections are highlights from the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library relating to LGBTQ history in Canada and around the world. 

U of T Archives

The University of Toronto Archives has archival material relating to LGBTQ history at the University of Toronto and its faculty members. Below are some highlights.

University College Sexual Representation Collection

The Sexual Representation Collection is one of the biggest single University-based research collections of materials relating to sexuality.  As a non-circulating research collection it offers a vast array of materials to researchers interested in the social and legal regulation, production, circulation, and content of sexual representations.  The collection includes thousands of archival materials, including books, art, audio-visual media and unique ephemera, all documenting some aspect of how sex has been represented, and therefore socially, culturally, and historically constructed and contested.

Sub-collections include:

  • Max Allen Collection: The extensive personal papers of Max Allen, former CBC producer and recognized anti-censorship activist who was involved in numerous legal battles to produce sexual representations between the 1970s and 1990s.  An extensive finding guide is available for this collection.
  • SexTV Collection:  approximately 930 books donated by the producers of SexTV after the television channel (previously program) ended production.  The books cover a range of issues related to sexuality, from arts to spirituality and health, and demonstrate the kinds of information being used by producers to create their public programming/media.
  • Book Collection: over 500 books, including monographs (fiction and non-fiction), reports, journals, art books, comics and zines.  The bulk of these materials are erotic fiction, including approximately 230 books published and/or distributed by erotic pulp novel companied from 1953-1986.  Pornography and Censorship are the primary themes of the book collection.
  • Video Collection: this collection is currently being processed, but contains over a thousand pornographic videos on VHS videocassette that were collected for a major research project on pornographic representations of bodies.
  • Scarborough Collection: contains over 1000 VHS videocassettes as well as hundreds of DVDs and numerous pornographic magazines.  All originated from a pornography retail shop that was in operation in Scarborough (a former municipality within Toronto, Ontario, Canada), which closed in the early 1990s.  These materials are divided into research themes and can be used as a case-study and to examine a wide range of questions about the mainstream pornography industry of this era.  An extensive finding guide is available for this collection.
  • Lord Morpheous Collection: Various promotional materials, photographs, and publications having to do with Toronto-based, internationally-active, Lord Morpheous and his career as a bondage photography, practitioner, and educator.  The collection includes digital and print copies of his art work, as well as ephemera, and signed copies of his 2008 How to be Kinky: a Beginner’s guide to BDSM and his 2012 How to be Kinkier: Your Guide to Safe and Sexy BDSM. An extensive finding guide is available for this collection.
  • Tristan Taormino Collection: a small collection of educational and erotic videos produced by Taormino, a leading feminist author, activist and sex educator
  • Annie Sprinkle Collection: a small collection of materials Sprinkle donated to the collection when she gave a talk, including materials on her art projects and ecosexuality movement