I'm Afraid of Men
"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, bestselling 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 twenty-first centuryVivek 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.

I'm Afraid of Men Details

TitleI'm Afraid of Men
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseAug 28th, 2018
PublisherPenguin Books Canada
ISBN-139780735235939
Rating
GenreNonfiction, Glbt, Queer, Autobiography, Memoir, Lgbt, Writing, Essays, Cultural, Canada

I'm Afraid of Men Review

  • Monika
    January 1, 1970
    This was an incredible essay. In so few pages Vivek Shraya really drives her point home. It's as heart wrenching as it is illuminating. This is essential reading - for everyone.Special thanks to NetGalley for the ARC! I'm Afraid of Men comes out August 28. Please pick up a copy. If you're only buying one book this year, let it be this one.
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  • Jackie
    January 1, 1970
    Some will be afraid of this book and that’s exactly why they - and you - should read it. It makes you think, it makes you nod in agreement and shake your head at the behaviour of some and most importantly forces you to consider yourself.
  • Kiki
    January 1, 1970
    How to describe this book? It's essentially an almanac of whining. Shraya, born into privilege and now a university professor after struggling for many years to achieve fame as a pop star, enumerates the ways in which she's felt oppressed, or even made slightly uncomfortable, by men (and women -- basically everyone) through the years. I was excited for something substantive, but this was insufferable.
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  • Karina
    January 1, 1970
    I’ll wait to share my favourite quotes until this comes out but wow do I have a few! ILoveGoodEssays
  • Andy Bird
    January 1, 1970
    A slim, 84 pages, hyper personal essay / memoir of being trans, bi, a person of color & what it would mean to be a "Good man". If you're interested in sexuality or gender I would highly recommend It!
  • ❇Critterbee
    January 1, 1970
    *e-Arc Netgalley*
  • Liz Laurin
    January 1, 1970
    this book is incredible but I feel the need to consider my review better as a queer white cis woman. I underlined many passages and felt it very deeply.
  • Lara
    January 1, 1970
    *ARC from Penguin Canada*To echo Tegan & Sara, this book is required reading for all!! "Being a girl has required me to retrain myself to think of depending on others or asking for assistance not as weakness or even as pathetic, but rather as a necessity.""What might desire feel like if the construction of sexuality didn't take place in tandem with childhood experiences of violence from men?" "I am soothed by your quiet demeanour, the absence of the masculine obligation to fill space, and th *ARC from Penguin Canada*To echo Tegan & Sara, this book is required reading for all!! "Being a girl has required me to retrain myself to think of depending on others or asking for assistance not as weakness or even as pathetic, but rather as a necessity.""What might desire feel like if the construction of sexuality didn't take place in tandem with childhood experiences of violence from men?" "I am soothed by your quiet demeanour, the absence of the masculine obligation to fill space, and the ocean of curiosity in your eyes.""The disdain for women and femininity is insidious, infecting even those who profess to love women, and it takes many forms (including scoffing at women's studies programs). Using 'sensitive' as a pejorative and mechanism of restraint, as my dad did, is a form of misogyny." "I'm afraid of women who've either emboldened or defended the men who have harmed me, or quietly watched." "Out of this fear comes a desire not only to reimagine masculinity, but to blur gendered boundaries altogether and celebrate gender creativity."
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  • Beth
    January 1, 1970
    I initially picked up this book hoping to see through the eyes of a trans woman and educate myself on what her path might look like. What I discovered was an insight into a very difficult journey but along with that I was challenged in my own perception of gender conformity. It made me think about our roles in society and I found that it gave me a little bit of strength and encouragement to explore my own feelings on the topic. My can of nonconforming worms has been well and truly opened. And fo I initially picked up this book hoping to see through the eyes of a trans woman and educate myself on what her path might look like. What I discovered was an insight into a very difficult journey but along with that I was challenged in my own perception of gender conformity. It made me think about our roles in society and I found that it gave me a little bit of strength and encouragement to explore my own feelings on the topic. My can of nonconforming worms has been well and truly opened. And for that I’m thankful that Vivek was able to so beautifully articulate her thoughts and share them with us all.
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  • Krystal Hicks
    January 1, 1970
    This was incredible powerful. Vivek’s honesty was inspiring and also eye opening. Definitely a must read. Thank you to Penguin Randomhouse for the ARC.
  • Shonah
    January 1, 1970
    Vivek Shraya says so much I’ve wanted to say, as a woman, and taught me so much about the struggles of being a trans woman.This book could be such an eye-opener for men on the fears that women and gender-nonconforming people face. Shraya highlights men’s “entitlement to space” and how seemingly subtle actions (manspreading on public transit) can be anxiety-inducing for women.
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  • Jennifer Stansbury
    January 1, 1970
    For such a quick read this book has impact. I understood how she felt but also saw my privilege as a cis woman. Everyone should read this. Not everyone will like it because it will make many people ( especially men) uncomfortable. But, that’s whole point.
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  • Colleen
    January 1, 1970
    I want to slip a copy of this book to everyone I know.
  • Lauren
    January 1, 1970
    An open, honest essay that touches on many aspects of gender, sexuality, and the cultural stigmas of masculinity and femininity. Shraya’s unique perspective makes this writing and others like it incredibly important for everyone to read.
  • Mike
    January 1, 1970
    Excellent! Touching personal stories woven together to illustrate the serious shortcomings in the treatment and understanding of gender, sex, and otherness. It's not preachy or abstract. It's welcoming and reflective and it flows easily from one moment to the next. I appreciate her overall invitation to "make room" for everyone--a simple suggestion to be mindful of others.Great, quick read that is sure to provoke some wonderful conversations!
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  • Anuradha
    January 1, 1970
    Gender identity is a personal thing, a natural state of being, yet there are so many people who struggle to find acceptance from others. This book should be read by EVERYONE to understand this struggle that human beings - who don't conform to society's idea of binary gender - have to endure. Vivek tells us her story directly, honestly, compellingly. Empowered!
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  • Anna Bunce
    January 1, 1970
    This book was excellent. A must read and a short one at that - but it's hardly short on ideas or topics to discuss and meditate on. Would make an excellent book club read. Vivek illuminates a reality that on the whole may be different from your own reality but you'll easily find slivers that ring so true to your own experience that reading it back on paper will be like looking in a mirror.
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  • Tasy Strouzas
    January 1, 1970
    This is a must read for everyone. I didn't realize how ignorant I was of the struggle Trans people go through. This book has taught me emapathy and understanding that I thought I already had. I received this as an advanced reading copy from Indigo Books. #indigoemployee
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  • Tracett
    January 1, 1970
    This is a powerful little book. It's small, but it packs so much emotion and heat and truth that I've had to read in small portions over a few weeks. This could be a challenging eye opener for many people, and perhaps an overwhelming experience for those who need to read the most.
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  • saskeah
    January 1, 1970
    This book completely exceeded my expectations, and I would consider it essential reading.
  • Josh H.
    January 1, 1970
    Very powerful for such a short book. Definitely need to reflect before I can say more.I received an advance copy from Indigo Books and Music. I am an Indigo employee.
  • Drew Gregory
    January 1, 1970
    Deeply, deeply grateful for this book and all of Vivek’s work.
  • Emily
    January 1, 1970
    This book is just about the same size as WE SHOULD ALL BE FEMINISTS, but packs a much larger punch. I hope to see it on every bookstore's front counter -- it is a beautiful and heartbreaking record of what it is like to live in a transphobic, homophobic, and misogynistic world. I loved it.
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  • Stephan
    January 1, 1970
    Vivek Shraya's I'm Afraid of Men is a short book, but it was a challenging one for me to read. It is very much a trauma narrative, and as a non-binary person who has experienced significant traumas and spent several years in therapy working through them, I found it incredibly painful to enter her frame of mind. Often when I read trans life writing, I feel less alone. This book, on the other hand, left me feeling as alienated and isolated and unacceptable and on edge as I did years ago.Shraya is Vivek Shraya's I'm Afraid of Men is a short book, but it was a challenging one for me to read. It is very much a trauma narrative, and as a non-binary person who has experienced significant traumas and spent several years in therapy working through them, I found it incredibly painful to enter her frame of mind. Often when I read trans life writing, I feel less alone. This book, on the other hand, left me feeling as alienated and isolated and unacceptable and on edge as I did years ago.Shraya is a strong woman who has survived and accomplished many remarkable things. From this book, it doesn't seem like she acknowledges her own resilience. I hope she can find some peace someday.
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