Dr Dave King: transgender research materials

  • King, Dr Dave
  • Archives and manuscripts

About this work


Papers of sociologist Dr Dave King relating to his research on transvestism and transgender in the UK. Dr King began to gather this material as research for his Ph.D, "The Transvestite and the Transsexual: A Case Study of Public Categories and Private Identities", Department of Sociology, University of Essex (1986: a copy is held in the Library) and continued to undertake research in this area into the 2000s, some of it in collaboration with Dr Richard Ekins. There are interviews and correspondence with medical practitioners - surgeons, psychiatrists, endocrinologists and urologists - psychologists and others who worked in a professional capacity with trans people from the 1940s to the 1980s, as well as with transgender individuals and with other social science researchers. There are also publications of and correspondence with a range of subcultural groups representing the transvestite and transgender communities, from support groups to activist organisations seeking legal recognition. There is also a substantial amount of general press and media material. The changing visibility of this population is illustrated by the increasing number of dedicated conferences, the papers of which can be found in section E of the collection. The collection includes a substantial amount of documentation on historical perceptions and descriptions of cross-dressing and gender transgression.

This archive contains a number of individual case and medical histories and personal interviews that are highly sensitive in nature and are therefore subject to closure or restrictions on access for reasons of Data Protection. A number of closed files have been further redacted for additional sensitivity issues



Physical description

32 boxes, 1 oversize folder, 34 audiotapes, 9 digital items 342.38 MB (359011691 bytes)



A. Medical (and other) professionals and transgender
B. Transgender individuals
C.Transgender subcultural groups
D. Other researchers
E. Transgender conferences
F. Topics relating to transgender
G. Press and media
H. Pioneer writers on transgender
J. Miscellaneous files
K. Audiovisual materials

Acquisition note

Given to the library at Wellcome Collection by Dr King, Dec 2013.

Biographical note

Sociologist Dr Dave King carried out research into transvestism and transsexualism from the 1970s. Since his retirement, Dr King has served as Honorary Senior Fellow at the School of Law and Social Justice, University of Liverpool.

Related material

In Wellcome:
Published works by Dr King and a substantial number of primary and secondary published works on transvestism, transsexuals, and related topics donated by him.
The Moving Image and Sound Collection holds copies of the following videotapes recorded by Dr King:

Le Mystere des Sexes: French version of Austrian b&w movie Mysterium des Geschlechtes, 1933
Some Like It Hot, 1959, with 2006 documentary The Making of "Some Like It Hot"
Horizon: Sex Change, BBC 21 Nov1966
A Change of Sex, BBC2 Parts 1, 2 , 1979, part 3, 1991
The Decision, 1996 Channel 4
Gwisgeu frnsi - with subtitles (Welsh) n.d. - ?c. 2000
Hidden Love: Modern Day Eunuchs, 2000
The Other Side: Journey Intersex, 21 Jul 2000, Channel 4
Boy Meets Girl, 6 Feb 2001, Channel 4
Child of Our Time: Tomboy or Sissy, BBC1, 4 Jul 2001 (tape is labelled as containing The Brandon Teena Story but this doesn't appear to be on it)
Changing Sex, 15 Jan 2002, Channel 4
Under the Knife with Miss Evans, 23 Jun 2003, Channel 4
Sex Change, 14 Jan 2004, Channel 4
Teenage Transsexuals, 28 Oct 2004, Channel 4
Sex in the 70s: The Joy of Sex, 2 Mar 2005 Channel 4
One Life: The Woman in Me, 11 May 2005, BBC1
World's Worst Sex Change Doctor, 10 Apr 2007, Channel 4/ on tape with Mr Miss Pageant, 17 Apr 2007
Age 8 and Wanting a Sex Change, 19 Oct 2009, Channel 4

and audiotapes of the following radio programmes: This Week, 1975: Robin Day with Le Bon, surgeon, Limentari, psychiatrist, Sally Vincent, journalist and writer, and Della, Paul and Chris, TS; Crossing Over, Radio 4, 6 Jun 79. 7.45 pm

Terms of use

This collection has been catalogued and is available to library members. Some items have access restrictions which are explained in the item-level catalogue records.

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Accession number

  • 2042