Dear Sister: Letters From Survivors of Sexual Violence


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Dear Sister, It wasn''t your fault; it was never your fault. You did nothing wrong. Hold this tight to your heart: it wasn''t your fault. At night when you lay there and your mind fills with images and you wonder if only, if you had . . . if you hadn''t . . . .

Remember: it wasn''t your fault. In Oakland, California on March 24, 2015 a fire destroyed the AK Press warehouse along with several other businesses. Please consider visiting the AK Press website to learn more about the fundraiser to help them and their neighbors.

Dear Sister shares the lessons, memories, and vision of over fifty artists, activists, mothers, writers, and students who share their stories of survival or what it means to be an advocate and ally to survivors. Written in an epistolary format, this multi-generational, multi-ethnic collection of letters and essays is a moving journey into the hearts and minds of the survivors of rape, incest, and other forms of sexual violence, written directly to and for other survivors. Dear Sister goes far beyond traditional books about healing, which often use experts" to explain the experience of survivors for the rest of the world. Where other books about rape weave the voices of feminists and activists together and imagine what a world without violence might look like, Dear Sister describes the reality of what the world looks like through the eyes of a survivor. From a professor in the Midwest to a poet in Belgium, an escapee from a child prostitution ring, a survivor advocate in the Congo, and a sex worker in San Francisco, Dear Sister touches on issues of feminism, love, disability, gender, justice, identity, and spirituality. Praise for Dear Sister : "This chilling, heartbreaking, and necessary collection consists of letters from 40 artists, activists, writers, and students, who are survivors of sexual assault and here offer counsel to ''sister'' survivors. Every story is shadowed by the teller''s sense of shame, brokenness, depression, and pain, but at the same time, in anticipation of the addressees'' experience of sexual assault, the letters also offer comfort, solidarity, reassurance, the possibility of healing, and testimony of survival."

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