Sunday, January 15, 2017

first Outspoken review! (and future excerpts, reviews, and interviews)

As you may (or may not) know, at the end of 2016, I released my third book, Outspoken: A Decade of Transgender Activism and Trans Feminism. It's a collection of forty-eight chapters spanning the last decade-plus, including my early slam poems and spoken word, essays and manifestos written contemporaneously with my previous books Whipping Girl and Excluded, plus my recent writings addressing differences within trans communities and activism.

I self-published Outspoken (on my own imprint Switch Hitter Press) and (for personal reasons) I haven't been able to do much promotion for the book until now. In the coming weeks, I plan to publish numerous excerpts from the book, and I've already started uploading YouTube videos for some of the slam poems that appear in the book! (More will be released later this week...)

If you are a writer and/or run some sort of zine, podcast, website, etc., and are interested in potentially reviewing the book and/or interviewing me about it, feel free contact me and I can try to get you a copy!

Also, if you are someone who has already read and enjoyed the book, I highly encourage you to leave a brief review on places like Amazon, Goodreads, and the like - those reviews really help with getting the book noticed.

In the meantime, last week I learned that the first Outspoken book review (that I'm aware of) was published: Outspoken By Julia Serano: The Evolution of a Transgender Feminist by Jeffry Iovannone and appearing in Radical Notion. You can read the entire article via the link - for the rest of you, here are three short blurbs from the review:

Serano is known for her clear prose, well-reasoned arguments, and ability to straddle and unify academic and activist spaces within her writing, and Outspoken is no exception. Both new and returning readers will profit from this collection. 

Though Outspoken often reads as a theoretical and challenging (in the best way possible) work, it is also incredibly intimate and personal . . . Many of the pieces in Outspoken simultaneously invite the reader into Serano’s life while critiquing the tendency, often perpetuated by mainstream media, to view trans people’s lives through a lens of voyeurism. Though Outspoken is not a memoir in a literal sense, it presents the making of a visionary writer and activist who has made peace with her identity and has arrived at a nuanced and self-reflective understanding of social justice work that continues to evolve.

Serano’s discussion of activism might be the most useful aspect of Outspoken given our current social and political climate in the United States. Her fearlessness in critiquing and generously examining social justice issues, such as cultural appropriation, the polarizing term “tranny,” activists’ use of language to shift gender norms, and the pros and cons of “identity politics,” from all possible perspectives is applause worthy. She is highly critical not only of arguments leveled against social justice advocates from the outside, but, more importantly, tactics used within activist spaces themselves that are potentially divisive and lead to smaller, less effective movements.

Outspoken is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iTunes Books, Kobo, Smashwords, and other online retailers. The book is also available to bookstores and libraries via Ingram.