When the mainstream transgender rights movement was still a glimmer on the horizon, Julia Serano's smash-hit manifesto Whipping Girl revolutionized the way we think about gender. With the movement for trans rights now at the center of our cultural debates, Julia Serano returns with a groundbreaking exploration of what it means to be sexualized.
We tend to think of sexualization -- that is, when people are reduced to their sexual bodies-as an issue that only affects women. But, as Serano deftly reveals, society sexualizes everyone along dehumanizing double standards, to disastrous effects. She shows how a predator-and-prey dynamic leads straight men to both admire and deride their partners, how bisexuals are stereotyped as "greedy," and how trans people are maligned as "entrappers" of cisgender people. Along the way, she unpacks why queerness is thought of as contagious, how people of color are sexualized to justify violence against them, and more broadly, how sexualization harms us all. Julia Serano confronts these arbitrary social rules, showing us that they're not natural or innate but instead are constructed. She then reveals powerful new ways to resist, by affirming consent and redefining courtship, so that we can forge life-affirming values for future generations.
Written with an activist's passion, a scientist's meticulous research, and a bisexual trans woman's wealth of lived experiences, Sexed Up provides a breath of fresh air for seasoned activists and newcomers alike. Engaging, lively, and provocative, written with a persuasive blend of personal anecdotes and scientific evidence, Sexed Up shows us why Julia Serano remains an unmatched voice leading us toward necessary change.
"How lucky we are to have Julia Serano -- a writer who brings razor-sharp analysis to the most challenging issues we face today. Sexed Up is another worthy addition to the canon, brimming with the unique patience, care, and clarity Serano brings to untangling our sexual preconceptions." -- Jude Ellison S. Doyle, author of Trainwreck
"A brilliant tour de force on an under-theorized topic -- sexualization -- and the havoc it wreaks on so many lives, especially the most marginalized. I can't wait to discuss this book: it's essential reading." -- Kate Manne, author of Down Girl
About the Author:
Julia Serano is the author of four books, including the acclaimed modern classic Whipping Girl. Her writing has been published in the New York Times, the Guardian, TIME, Salon, Ms., and Bitch. Serano holds a PhD in biochemistry from Columbia University. She lives in Oakland, California.