This fledgling project is intended to provide trans people with access to the seminal works on trans issues. There are, of course, several collections that hold trans books in Ottawa, including the Dr. Kelly McGinnis Library at Kind. However, Kind limits itself to books 10 years and newer. The Ottawa Public Library is also a valuable resource, but their policy regarding the acquisition of trans books is defined of necessity by the wider population they serve.
On the other side of the country, the University of Victoria has the best trans library and archives in the world. Unfortunately, it’s an expensive journey to go to Victoria to see their collection.
Please get in touch with me if you want to borrow a title. Like the Ottawa Public Library, the loan period will be three weeks. Please note, however, that I’m the librarian with the tight bun and the stern look who will most certainly hound you to return the book. I don’t understand how anyone can grow to adulthood and not know that libraries lend books – they don’t give them away! Also, if there is a demand one day, I’ll open my house for a day in the month (or the week?) for casual browsing or study.
If you still have a collection of trans books or periodicals gathering dust in your basement that you would consider deaccessioning (that’s a respectful term for “getting rid of”), please get in touch with me. I am interested in acquiring even transphobic titles. (Know thine enemy.) I’ll list the complete collection on this website. It’s not a proper library catalogue, but if you are looking for a particular title, the search function will let you know if we have it. It’s also fun to browse sometimes. It’s going to take a while to list even the books I have currently, but I’ll work at it diligently and hope I can get the complete list up soon and then keep up with the acquisitions. I’m willing to accept archival donations also, if there is a demand.
Here are the catalogues for the ambitiously named Ottawa Trans Library. This does not represent all the books in the library, only those added to the catalogue thus far. Titles will be added regularly until the catalogues are complete. I will keep you posted on this fledgling project as I go along.