US: Harvard creates gay professorship

Harvard University is creating an endowed professorship in lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual studies, the first of its kind in the United States and reflecting a rise in s ex-related academia nationwide, writes Erin Kutz for Reuters. The Ivy League school will invite visiting scholars to teach on sexuality and issues related to sexual minorities for one semester each, a Harvard official said last week.

While other universities have course offerings and degree programmes in sexuality studies, Harvard's endowment allows the professorship on the subject to be funded in perpetuity, the first university in the country to do so.

The Harvard Gay & Lesbian Caucus raised $1.5 million to fund the role, to be known as the "FO Matthiessen Visiting Professorship of Gender and Sexuality", named after American studies scholar and literary critic FO Matthiessen. Harvard gave undergraduates the option in 2003 of concentrating on lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender issues as an academic field, according to the university.
Full report on the Reuters site