Pride Month: On Embodiment
June is Pride Month—a time that can be used to amplify the voices and experiences of NAB’s LGBTQ+ authors, community members, staff, and readers. Today we’re spotlighting a few of our authors whose work explores what it means to live in an intersectional queer or trans body today.
To inhabit a body that falls outside the de facto norm—white, male, cis, straight, neurotypical, able-bodied—is inherently political. It can also be beautiful, painful, conflicting, challenging, in turns empowering and disempowering, and is unique to each individual.
Despite the strides we’ve made toward equity, inclusion, power, and self-love in LGBTQ+ communities, there’s work to do: as NAB author Rev. angel Kyodo williams once told our publisher Tim Mckee, “I may not necessarily wake up feeling like a black queer woman, but by lunchtime America has made that painfully clear.”
Authors working in contemporary activist, mental health, somatics 2.0, and social justice spaces grow the impact and our understanding of NAB’s foundational roots in somatics. This work, of course, recognizes the reality that embodied experience is inextricably linked to both the personal and the political: that as we each exist in our own bodies, we and they are subject to the power structures, side glances, oppression, quick street-crossings, and constructs of our communities and society at large.
Below, excerpts from some of our new, new-ish, and upcoming titles by queer and trans writers on embodiment—and a bonus sneak peek.
Radical Dharma Testimonies: Queer is as Queer Does
Igniting a long-overdue dialogue about how the legacy of racial injustice and white supremacy plays out in society at large and Buddhist communities in particular, this urgent call to action outlines a new dharma that accounts for the ways that racism and privilege prevent our collective awakening. Radical Dharma demonstrates how social transformation and personal and spiritual liberation must be articulated and inextricably linked.
Authors Rev. angel Kyodo williams, Lama Rod Owens, and Jasmine Syedullah on the embodied connection between personal liberation and social transformation. From “Bringing Our Whole Selves: A Theory of Queer Dharma.” Download the excerpt here.
The notion of “body” that underlies most available writings about somatic theories and practices often assumes a universal normality of structure and function that doesn’t reflect the texture, diversity, and experiences of all (or even most) people. In this collection, viewpoints grounded in gender, neurodivergent, and ethnic diversities challenge the status quo to open up a more healing and inclusive world of somatics.
Contributor Roger J. Kuhn on embodiment, positionality, and intersectionality as a Two-Spirit and gay mixed-race Native American of European descent.
Download the excerpt here.
On Queerness and Disability
In a culture where bodies of people who are queer, brown, black, female, transgender, disabled, or fat are shamed, sexualized, ignored, and oppressed, what does it mean to live in a marginalized body?
Oppression and the Body anthology contributor Eli Clare on bodies stolen and reclaimed, what we believe about our bodies, irrevocable difference, and re-centering the body in social justice efforts and liberation work.
Download the excerpt here.
We’ve Been Too Patient (on sale in July) is a radical mental health anthology that examines and challenges our current system, foregrounding voices—queer, trans, POC, and others—that are often left out of the conversation, dismissed, or talked over.
Various essays explore both the intersections and discrete experiences of gender, sexuality, and mental health in America.
To learn more, stay tuned for next month’s newsletter, read the excerpt “What is Radical Mental Health?”, or pre-order below.
Bonus sneak peek: Read contributor Chris Anastasia’s excerpt here.
The first anthology of its kind gathering the many voices and experiences of transgender, genderqueer, and non-binary Buddhists.This volume gives voice to those who have long been marginalized within the Buddhist world, and society at large. In this diverse collection we hear the firsthand accounts, thoughts, and reflections of non-cis Buddhists from a variety of different lineages. The book is an open invitation for all Buddhists to welcome the issue of gender identity into the sangha, the discourse, and onto the cushion. Pre-ordering available soon.