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George Chauncey Receives Lifetime Achievement Award from Library of Congress


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Historian George Chauncey received a $500,000 lifetime achievement award from the Library of Congress, the John W. Kluge Prize, the first time the honor has been bestowed upon a scholar of LGBTQ studies.

The award is given for achievement in the study of humanity. Chauncey, a professor of American history at Columbia University, is known for books such as “Gay New York” and “Why Marriage? The History Shaping Today’s Debate over Gay Equality.”

“Professor Chauncey’s pioneering career has given us all greater insight and understanding into the LGBTQ+ community and history,” Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden said in a statement released Wednesday. “His work, which has helped transform our nation’s attitudes and laws, embodies the Kluge Center’s mission to support research at the intersection of humanities and public policy.”

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The Kluge Prize is named after the late philanthropist and television mogul. Previous winners are Drew Gilpin Faust and John Hope Franklin.

“I am deeply honored to receive the Kluge Prize,” Chauncey said in a statement, “and grateful that the Library of Congress has recognized the importance and vibrancy of the field of LGBTQ history.”

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