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Reading & Discussion

  • Philly AIDS Thirft at Giovanni's Room 345 South 12th Street Philadelphia, PA, 19107 United States (map)

Please join us for a reading and discussion with some of the contributors for the anthology Queering Sexual Violence: Radical Voices from Within the Anti-Violence Movement. 

Featuring readings by contributors Aishah Shahidah Simmons & Jennifer Patterson. (And possible additional contributors.)

About the Anthology:
Often pushed to the margins, queer, transgender and gender non-conforming survivors have been organizing in anti-violence work since the birth of the movement. Queering Sexual Violence: Radical Voices from Within the Anti-Violence Movement locates them at the center of the anti-violence movement and creates a space for their voices to be heard. Moving beyond dominant narratives and the traditional “violence against women” framework, the book is multi-gendered, multi-racial and multi-layered. 

This collection disrupts the mainstream conversations about sexual violence and connects them to disability justice, sex worker rights, healing justice, racial justice, gender self-determination, queer & trans liberation and prison industrial complex abolition through reflections, personal narrative, and strategies for resistance and healing. The contributors to this book are a feral and wildly compassionate collection of writers, bartenders, professors, therapists, sex workers, healers, sex positive educators, organizers, musicians, bloggers, non-profit workers, filmmakers and rabble rousers. Where systems, institutions, families, communities and partners have failed them, this collection lifts them up, honors a multitude of lived experiences and shares the radical work that is being done outside mainstream anti-violence and the non-profit industrial complex.

More information here:

Aishah Shahidah Simmons is a Black feminist lesbian filmmaker, writer, international lecturer, and activist. An incest and rape survivor, Aishah is the producer, writer, and director of the Ford Foundation-funded, internationally acclaimed, award-winning film NO! The Rape Documentary. NO! explores the international atrocity of heterosexual rape and other forms of sexual assault through the first person testimonies, scholarship, spirituality, activism and cultural work of African-Americans. Subtitled in Spanish, French, and Portuguese, NO! also explores how rape is used as a weapon of homophobia. She credits her 14-year practice of Vipassana Meditation as one of the non-negotiable tools that support her work on gender-based violence issues. She is the 2015- 2016 Sterling A. Brown Visiting Professor of Africana Studies at Williams College. She is also 2016-2018 Just Beginnings Collaborative Fellow where she is developing #LoveWITHAccountability, her multimedia project, which will address incest and other forms of child sexual abuse. An associate editor of the online magazine The Feminist Wire, Aishah’s cultural work and activism have been documented extensively in a wide range of media outlets including The Root, Crisis, Forbes, Left of Black, In These Times, Ms., Alternet, ColorLines, The Philadelphia Weekly, National Public Radio (NPR), Pacifica Radio Network, and Black Entertainment Television (BET). 

Jennifer Patterson is a poet/writer, grief worker, creative and herbalist who uses words, threads and plants to explore queer survivorhood, the body and healing. She is the editor of the anthology Queering Sexual Violence: Radical Voices from Within the Anti-Sexual Violence Movement (Magnus/ Riverdale Ave Books, 2016), facilitates somatic writing workshops and has had writing published in OCHO: A Journal of Queer Arts, the Outrider Review, HandJoband on The Feminist Wire.Jennifer is also finishing a graduate program at Goddard College focusing on trauma, queer communities, healing, craft, loss, pleasure, pain and creative non-fiction.