7 Books To Read During Trans Awareness Week

Our cultural understanding of trans people is often limited to stereotypes shaped through the lenses of cisgender people. We have discussions about trans people when they’ve been killed, incarcerated, or discriminated against, or relegate our conversations simply to their physical transition. Transgender Awareness Week is an annual commemoration from November 13 through November 17 to increase visibility for trans people that’s not predicated upon pain, loss, or death. In honor of Transgender Awareness Week, here are seven recently released books that offer compelling narratives about trans identity.


1. To My Trans Sisters edited by Charlie Craggs

To My Trans Sisters book cover

{ Jessica Kingsley Publishers }
Release Date: October 19, 2017
Price: $18.95

Buy It Now

In this powerful collection of letters, 25 prominent trans women share their journeys with fellow trans people. To My Trans Sisters is a testament to the power of storytelling.

 

 

 

 

 


2. Transgender History, Second Edition: The Roots of Today’s Revolution by Susan Stryker

Transgender History by Susan Stryker book cover

{ Seal Press }
Release Date: November 7, 2017
Price: $17.99

Buy It Now

In a critical follow-up to Susan Stryker’s first edition of Transgender History, the recently released second edition offers a timeline of important trans achievements from World War I through the ’90s and early ’00s. It’s an actual history of trans people that’s not rooted in transphobia.

 

 

 

 


3. Subject to Change: Trans Poetry & Conversation edited by H. Melt

Subject to Change edited by H. Melt book cover

{ Sibling Rivalry Press }
Release Date: November 16, 2017
Price: $17.00

Buy It Now

Subject to Change celebrates five trans poets—Joshua Jennifer Espinoza, Christopher Soto, beyza ozer, Cameron Awkward-Rich, and Kay Ulanday Barrett—who have become some of the greatest writers of their generations.

 

 

 

 

 


4. Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More by Janet Mock

Redefining Realness by Janet Mock

{ Atria }
Release Date: December 2, 2014
Price: $8.98

Buy It Now

When Janet Mock revealed she is trans in a Marie Claire feature, it was a national moment. She capitalized on that momentum in her debut memoir Redefining Realness, which details her upbringing in Hawaii and her transition in high school.

 

 

 

 


5. A Safe Girl to Love by Casey Plett

A Safe Girl to Love by Casey Plett book cover

{ Topside Press }
Release Date: May 5, 2014
Price: $16.95

Buy It Now

In these 11 short stories, Casey Plett explores trans girlhood and how trans girls navigate sex, love, and harassment. Safe Girl to Love will make you laugh out loud and reflect on the importance of coming-of-age narratives.

 

 

 

 

 


6. Meanwhile, Elsewhere: Science Fiction and Fantasy from Transgender Writers edited by Cat Fitzpatrick

Meanwhile, Elsewhere book cover

{ Topside Press }
Release Date: August 14, 2017
Price: $22.95

Buy It Now

Meanwhile, Elsewhere is a sci-fi anthology that allows trans writers to write about trans creators in worlds outside of our own. None of the stories focus on transitioning, which shouldn’t be considered revolutionary, but it is because the anthology isn’t about appeasing cisgender readers.

 

 

 

 


7. Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity (Second Edition) by Julia Serano

Whipping Girl by Julia Serano

{ Seal Press }
Release Date: March 8, 2016
Price: $9.95

Buy It Now

Julia Serano is the perfect antidote to trans-exclusionary radical extremists (because they’re not feminists). The professional biologist chronicles her experience as a trans woman to challenge the idea that biological sex is equivalent to gender. It’s an incredibly engrossing read.

Evette Dionne
by Evette Dionne
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Evette Dionne is Bitch Media’s senior culture editor. She’s all about Beyoncé, Black women, and dope TV shows and books. You can follow her on Twitter.

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