Moving memoir and insightful examination of transgender politics.
'Six weeks before sex reassignment surgery (SRS), I am obliged to stop taking my hormones. I suddenly feel very differently about my forthcoming operation.'
In July 2012, aged thirty, Juliet Jacques underwent sex reassignment surgery-a process she chronicled with unflinching honesty in a serialised national newspaper column. Trans tells of her life to the present moment: a story of growing up, of defining yourself, and of the rapidly changing world of gender politics.
Fresh from university, eager to escape a dead-end job, she launches a career as a writer in a publishing culture dominated by London cliques and still figuring out the impact of the Internet. She navigates the treacherous waters of a world where, even in the liberal and feminist media, transgender identities go unacknowledged, misunderstood or worse. Yet through art, film, music, politics and football, Jacques starts to become the person she had only imagined, and begins the process of transition. Interweaving the personal with the political, her memoir is a powerful exploration of debates that comprise trans politics, issues which promise to redefine our understanding of what it means to be alive.
Revealing, honest, humorous, and self-deprecating, Trans includes an epilogue with Sheila Heti, author of How Should a Person Be?, in which Jacques and Heti discuss the cruxes of writing and identity.
About the Author
Juliet Jacques is a freelance writer, best known for the Guardian's Transgender Journey -the first time the gender reassignment process had been serialised for a major British publication. Her column was longlisted for the Orwell Prize in 2011. She was included in the Independent's Pink List for 2012, 2013 and 2014, and is a regular contributor to the New Statesman. She has also written for Granta, TimeOut, Filmwaves, 3am, the London Review of Books, the New Humanist, the New Inquiry, and many other publications. She lives in London.
"Brave and moving, Trans is necessary reading for anyone who cares about gender, power, freedom and desire. Juliet Jacques deals with the forces of cruelty and ignorance with a hard-won clarity and calm. A vital voice in our turbulent times." -- Olivia Laing, author of The Trip to Echo Spring
"Trans is a marvelously nuanced journey through gender, brilliantly contextualized in the disparate worlds of pop culture, football, mass media, and the NHS. This is a terrific read by an accomplished author." -- Kate Bornstein, author of A Queer and Pleasant Danger
"I Am Cait for the literary set. Jacques lays her transitioning experience bare - hormones and surgery and all - with an afterword by Sheila Heti." -- New York Magazine
"Brutally honest and funny." -- Marie Claire
"Jacques is trapped in the wrong narrative, and Trans offers the possibility of a more complete one, with a holistic personal story that does not reject pre-transition identity, and an understanding that gender lies on a continuum...the most sublime moments in Trans come when Jacques shares with us a vision she has gained - and often these are hard-won - into what it means to have a unified self, whether it's when she receives recognition from her parents for her success, has a great day on the soccer field, or simply feels good in her skin." -- Amanda DeMarco, Flavorwire