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Graphic Medicine and LGBTQ Health

Posted by on June 18th, 2018 Posted in: Blog, Graphic Medicine, NLM Resources
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Learning about a new health topic can be hard.  It can feel overwhelming and impersonal.  But Graphic Medicine can help.

Graphic Medicine is comic books and graphic novels that tell personal stories of health and wellness.  The visual format makes the information easier to understand and digest.  By reading the author or illustrator’s personal story, we can learn about issues we may not have experienced personally.  These stories can also help us feel less alone in our own lives.

The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans*, Queer/Questioning (LGBTQ) Community includes a wide diversity of people and experiences.  LGBTQ themed graphic novels provide glimpses into people’s lives allowing the reader to feel connected and learn about individuals that make up the larger rainbow community.

In honor of Pride Month, here are a few LGBTQ themed graphic novels to check out:

  • Fun Home by Alison Bechdel-Bechdel tells the story of her relationship to her closeted father and how it influenced and was influenced by her own coming out in late adolescence. Fun Home is available as a book club kit from NNLM-NER. Request it here
  • First Year Out: A Transition Story by Sabrina Symington-Based on Symington’s own experiences, First Year Out takes the reader through the physical, mental and emotional journey of transition including coming out, voice training, dating, hormones and more.
  • Snapshots of a Girl by Beldan Sezen-Through short scenes, Sezen’s autobiographical graphic novel touches on coming of age and coming out as lesbian while navigating western and Islamic cultures.

Visit the MedlinePlus Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Health page for more information on LGBTQ Health.

And to learn more about Graphic Medicine visit the NLM’s website for the traveling exhibit Graphic Medicine: Ill-Conceived, Well-Drawn.  Or request a Graphic Medicine Book Club Kit for your library, school or community group to try.

Image of the author ABOUT Sarah Levin-Lederer


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This has been funded in whole or in part with Federal funds from the Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Library of Medicine, under cooperative agreement number UG4LM012347 with the University of Massachusetts Medical School.

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