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Julia Serano

Whipping Girl, Excluded, Spoken Word 

Julia Serano is a true Renaissance woman—a writer, poet, activist, performer and biologist. Her new book Excluded: Making Feminist and Queer Movements More Inclusive (Seal Press), was published in October, 2013. She is best known for her book Whipping Girl: A Transsexual Woman on Sexism and the Scapegoating of Femininity (Seal Press), a collection of personal essays that reveal how misogyny frames popular assumptions about femininity and shapes many of the myths and misconceptions people have about transsexual women. Since its publication in 2007, Whipping Girl has garnered rave reviews and has been used as teaching materials in gender studies, queer/LGBT studies, psychology and human sexuality courses in colleges across North America.

Julia’s other writings have appeared in anthologies (including Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and A World Without Rape, Word Warriors: 30 Leaders in the Women’s Spoken Word Movement, and Gender Outlaws: The Next Generation), and in feminist, queer, pop culture, and literary magazines and websites (such as Bitch, AlterNet, Out,, Women’s eNews, and make/shift). Her articles and essays tackle a broad range of topics, including sexism, sexualization, trans feminism, LGBT and transgender issues, psychiatric depictions of gender variance, the nature versus nurture debate, bisexuality, femininity and femme politics, and how to make feminist and LGBT movements more inclusive.

Julia is also an accomplished spoken word artist. She is a slam poetry champion (qualifying for finals and/or semifinals in Berkeley, San Francisco, and San Jose) and has performed spoken word at a variety of high profile events, including San Francisco Pride, the San Francisco Dyke March, Ladyfest, and the National Queer Arts Festival. Serano is also an event curator, single-handedly organizing the performance series Gender Enders from 2003-06, and co-curating the recurring spoken word event Girl Talk: A Cis and Trans Woman Dialogue (2009-present).

Julia has a PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics from Columbia University, and works as a researcher at UC Berkeley in the field of developmental and evolutionary biology. Her understanding of biology, along with her life experiences as a male-to-female transsexual, give her a unique perspective on gender and sexism that challenges many commonly held beliefs. She has been invited to present keynote talks for diverse array of conferences (including Pedagogy of Privilege, At the Border: Transformation and Transition in Contemporary Feminism, Lewis and Clark Gender Studies Symposium, Radical Queer Convergence, Philadelphia Trans-Health Conference, and Femme 2008), and is routinely invited to college campuses to give performances and presentations on feminism, gender and LGBT-related issues.

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Julia Serano
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