Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Collection Policy


subject description and guidelines

  • Social science materials about women, feminism, gender roles, and sexuality from the fields of economics, sociology, political science, and military and peace studies, and general, theoretical, or comparative works on these subjects.


  • The Library supports social sciences work done in this field within any department or program and maintains an active connection with the Feminist, Gender, & Sexuality Studies Program.


collection strength

  • The Library maintains a strong research collection in the subjects of women’s political participation, feminism, men and masculinity, and sexuality, and the Library of Congress range from HN49 through HQ2030, which includes the topics: sexual lives and erotica; prostitution, sex tourism; reproductive rights; and surrogate mothers. Transgender and lesbian, gay, and bisexual subjects are being collected at a nearly comprehensive level, and are supported by extensive primary sources. Gender and sexuality issues in crime, war and the military, and peace are collected somewhat less intensely, at the study level. Medical, public health, sports and recreation are covered at the basic level, supplying enough to give introductions to these topics but not sustained, in depth research.

collection level

  • comprehensive
  • research

geographical guidelines

  • The social science funds cover, in order of priority: the U.S., Canada, Great Britain (including Ireland), Australia, New Zealand, and Oceania (Fiji, South Pacific Islands). Area selectors bring in FGSS material about other regions. Western Europe and Southeast Asia are particularly strong collections.

areas of significant geographic coverage

country (self-governing)

  • Australia 
  • Canada 
  • Great Britain 
  • Ireland 
  • New Zealand 
  • United States of America 

transnational region

  • Oceania 

language guidelines

  • Primarily English, with materials in French, German, Spanish or other languages collected selectively. The Library has an extensive collection of German language texts of the late 19th c. sexologists, and seeks research about transgender, lesbian, gay, and bisexual issues, sex trafficking, and prostitution in multiple languages.


  • English 
  • French 
  • German 
  • Spanish 

chronological guidelines

  • Historical periods after 1540 CE. FGSS issues in antiquity and the medieval period are collected at Cornell by the Classics and History selectors, respectively.


housed in

  • Olin Library 

special collections or noteworthy resources in the field

  • Human Sexuality Collection Rare and Manuscript Collections

related library subject collection


library contact

  • Marston, Brenda J. -  Curator of the Human Sexuality Collection & Head of Research Services