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I'm Afraid of Men

Written by: Vivek Shraya
Narrated by: Vivek Shraya
Length: 1 hr and 26 mins
5 out of 5 stars (27 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Named a Best Book by: The Globe and Mail, Indigo, Out Magazine, Audible, CBC, Apple, Quill & Quire, Kirkus Reviews, Brooklyn Public Library, Writers’ Trust of Canada, Autostraddle, Bitch, and BookRiot.

"Cultural rocket fuel." (Vanity Fair

"Emotional and painful but also layered with humour, I'm Afraid of Men will widen your lens on gender and challenge you to do better. This challenge is a necessary one - one we must all take up. It is a gift to dive into Vivek's heart and mind." (Rupi Kaur, best-selling author of The Sun and Her Flowers and Milk and Honey

A trans artist explores how masculinity was imposed on her as a boy and continues to haunt her as a girl - and how we might reimagine gender for the 21st century.

Vivek Shraya has reason to be afraid. Throughout her life she's endured acts of cruelty and aggression for being too feminine as a boy and not feminine enough as a girl. In order to survive childhood, she had to learn to convincingly perform masculinity. As an adult, she makes daily compromises to steel herself against everything from verbal attacks to heartbreak. 

Now, with raw honesty, Shraya delivers an important record of the cumulative damage caused by misogyny, homophobia, and transphobia, releasing trauma from a body that has always refused to assimilate. I'm Afraid of Men is a journey from camouflage to a riot of colour and a blueprint for how we might cherish all that makes us different and conquer all that makes us afraid.

©2018 Vivek Shraya (P)2018 Penguin Random House Canada

What the critics say

“Vivek Shraya transforms her long-festering fears of men into cultural rocket fuel.... Shraya’s dispatches from the frontlines of life as a queer, trans woman of color are frequently illuminating, painfully honest, and, in spite of everything, hopeful.” (Vanity Fair)

“Shraya crafts each of her memories in prose made poetic with touches of metaphor. She writes with honesty and vulnerability, all the while asking challenging and personal questions that inspire deeper reflection. This crucial addition to shelves offers the vital and often ignored perspective of a trans woman of color. A book to carry with you.” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review) 

“Anyone who has ever looked behind them when walking at night, avoided eye contact with strangers or wiped off a lipstick for being too bold - so, all of us - should read this mini-manifesto.” (Elle Canada

“Viscerally powerful...creating tectonic fissures into antiquated beliefs around gender identity.” (Toronto Star)

What members say

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

amazing, must read feminist text

Liike everything Vivek does, this book is mind blowing. She offers a critical and thoughtful discussion of what it means to be masculine/a man (from the POV of a trans* women of colour who used to be identified as a queer femme man of colour who was living in white Alberta) and how women and femme people navigate spaces and their bodies out of a fear of men and masculinity. Does a fantastic job. Vivek is a wonderful poet, intellectual and writer.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Professor Ball
  • 2019-02-20

Fantastic

An amazing view of the effects our gender roles play in trauma. And a glimpse at a potential brighter future.

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  • RosieM
  • CHESAPEAKE BEACH, MD, United States
  • 2018-09-22

Not good.

I didn’t like anything about this book. I want my money back. Zero stars. Bad.

0 of 6 people found this review helpful