My Book of Feminist Essays is Live!
I did it! I am finally a self-published author!
I wanted to offer my Medium readers a chance to get the book for free over the next couple of days. I never could have done it without this platform and the support I have received from you guys over the past few years. In an internet filled with misogynist trolls, Medium is a safe space where people empathise with each other, respect each other, and become better together.
Survivor: Feminist Essays on Rape, Rage and the Road to Recovery is a collection of feminist essays about sexual assault and how we survive it.
Here is an excerpt of the introduction so you can get a taste.
There are the big incidents, the ones I don’t feel like talking about. Then there are the small ones that hardly seem worth mentioning.
But most numerous of all sexual assaults are the murky moments, the ones I can’t put words on. The ones abusers orchestrate so that they always stay under the radar — because how can you explain how uncomfortable you were made by something that barely happened? By something that could easily have been a mistake?
The neat version of my life story would say: I was raped twice and then started writing about sexual assault to break the silence. But that is not what happened. The time I was assaulted when solo-travelling and the time I was roofied in a bar did not exist in a vacuum. They barely stood out from the ongoing stream of abuse I had experienced, as many women do, from before I had even hit puberty.
Men taking advantage of my body was so normalised that I didn’t, at first, even recognise what had happened as rape. He took it too far. I got scared. Something crappy happened, I tentatively told my friends. It took me a long time to put words to my reality. Now that I have, I still could not say if I have been traumatised more by those two nights or by all the other things, big and small, that have taught me that men see my body as their own.
In this context, writing about my experience did not feel like “breaking the silence”, as the somewhat clichéd expression goes. As a woman, I had been taught to…