Virtual Event: Meredith Talusan
in conversation with GARRARD CONLEY
May 29, 2020
7:00 PM ET
Join our online event (or pre-register) via the link in the event description.
Free - $5 contribution suggested at registration
Harvard Book Store's virtual event series and the Harvard Gender and Sexuality Caucus welcome award-winning journalist MEREDITH TALUSAN—contributing editor of them., Condé Nast's LGBTQ+ digital platform—for a discussion of her debut memoir, FAIREST. She will be joined in conversation by GARRARD CONLEY, celebrated author of the New York Times bestselling memoir Boy Erased, available for purchase here.
Contribute to Support Harvard Book Store
While payment is not required, we are suggesting a $3 contribution to support this author series, our staff, and the future of Harvard Book Store—a locally owned, independently run Cambridge institution. In addition, by purchasing a copy of Fairest from our affiliate Bookshop page, you support indie bookselling and the writing community during this difficult time.
Fairest is a memoir about a precocious boy with albinism, a "sun child" from a rural Philippine village, who would grow up to become a woman in America. Coping with the strain of parental neglect and the elusive promise of U.S. citizenship, Talusan found childhood comfort from her devoted grandmother, a grounding force as she was treated by others with special preference or public curiosity. As an immigrant to the United States, Talusan came to be perceived as white. An academic scholarship to Harvard provided access to elite circles of privilege but required Talusan to navigate through the complex spheres of race, class, sexuality, and her place within the gay community. She emerged as an artist and an activist questioning the boundaries of gender. Talusan realized she did not want to be confined to a prescribed role as a man, and transitioned to become a woman, despite the risk of losing a man she deeply loved.
Throughout her journey, Talusan shares poignant and powerful episodes of desirability and love that will remind readers of works such as Call Me By Your Name and Giovanni's Room. Her evocative reflections will shift our own perceptions of love, identity, gender, and the fairness of life.
Praise for Fairest
“A searching, rigorously self-examining memoir, Fairest grapples beautifully and seriously with questions of gender, race, colorism, migration, colonialism, queerness, privilege, class, and belonging. A debut luminous with insight.” —R.O. Kwon, author of The Incendiaries
“Fairest is a powerful panoptic memoir which frames the totality of a life being lived, not just the fractions of it. It's a love story, a queer story, an immigrant story, an American story, a coming of age story—a revolutionary story. A most necessary and important book in a world which aims to other us from not just who we are, but who we are meant to become.” —Amber Tamblyn, author of Era of Ignition
“Meredith Talusan has written a truly brilliant memoir with sparkling sentences, navigating incredibly complex questions of privilege with ease and candor. Everything here feels true and necessary—a rare literary accomplishment. I'll recommend this book to my queer family and my Arkansan family alike, and to students who want to know why we continue to believe in the power of memoir.” —Garrard Conley, author of Boy Erased
The Harvard Gender & Sexuality Caucus has been working for the bisexual, gay, lesbian, trans and queer members of the Harvard University community since 1984. The HGSC is dedicated to fostering a robust community that links the BGLTQ alumni, faculty, staff and students together on campus and around the world. For more information, visit: http://hgsc.sigs.harvard.edu/
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