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Raftery: Historical BIPOC & LGBTQIA+ peoples and events


The boxes below break down what these acronyms means. They are not an exhaustive definition or a complete list of all the relevant terms. 

They will help you discovery topics both in the library databases as well as web sources. 

What is BIPOC

BIPOC refers to Black, Indigenous, People Of Color. Provided is an explanation of the infographic, it is not an exhaustive list of relevant terms. 

Black: African American

Indigenous: Names of specific tribes, First Nations (Canada), Aboriginals (Australia)  

People of Color: The phrase, “people of color” dates back to 1796 — it was first cited in The Oxford English Dictionary, with the British spelling “colour,”. This typically refers to Latinos, and Asian. 


Garcia, Sandra E. “Where Did BIPOC Come From?” The New York Times, The New York Times, 15 June 2020,

Grady, Constance. "Why the term “BIPOC” is so complicated, explained by linguists" VOX, Vox Media, 30 June 2020,

General Library Databases

What is LBGTQIA+

LGBTQIA+ refers to Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgendered, Questioning or Queer, Intersex, Asexual or Ally, + .

Lesbian: A woman whose enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction is to other women. Some lesbians may prefer to identify as gay or as gay women.

Gay: A man whose enduring physical, romantic, and/or emotional attraction is to other men.

Bisexual: Bisexual describes an individual who is physically, romantically, and/or emotionally attracted to both men and women.

Transgender: Transgender is an umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from the sex they were assigned at birth.

Questioning: Individuals who are unsure of their sexual orientation and/or gender identity

Queer: Encompasses a variety of sexual orientations and gender identities excluding heterosexuality. The term was originally used as a slur but has been reclaimed by younger generations to also refer to political ideologies not adhering to heteronormativity or a gender-binary

Intersex: Someone born with biological sex characteristics that aren’t traditionally associated with male or female bodies. Intersexuality does not refer to sexual orientation or gender identity.

Asexual: Individuals who do not feel sexual attraction to others or have a desire for partnered sexuality. Asexuality is different than celibacy, which is the deliberate abstention from sexual activity.

Ally: A person who is a member of the dominant group who works to end oppression in his or her own personal and professional life by supporting and advocating with the oppressed population

+: Denotes everything on the gender and sexuality spectrum that letters and words can’t yet describe.


“Defining LGBTQ.” What Is LGBTQ?, Lesbian & Gay Community Services Center, Inc., 2020,

Gold, Michael. “The ABCs of L.G.B.T.Q.I.A.+.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 21 June 2018,

Heartland Alliance. “Rainbow Welcome Initiative.” Rainbow Welcome Initiative - F.A.Q., Heartland Alliance, 2020,