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In-Person: PRETTY: A Memoir by KB Brookins

We are thrilled to welcome back KB Brookins to celebrate their memoir, Pretty. For this event, KB will be joined in conversation by Kemi Alabi. 

Please note: This event is free, but registration is required! By registering for this event, you agree to abide by W&CF's Covid-19 policy, which means wearing a mask throughout the duration of the event. 

REGISTER FOR THIS EVENT HERE

By a prize-winning, young Black trans writer of outsized talent, a fierce and disciplined memoir about queerness, masculinity, and race.

Even as it shines light on the beauty and toxicity of Black masculinity from a transgender perspective—the tropes, the presumptions—Pretty is as much a powerful and tender love letter as it is a call for change.  

“I should be able to define myself, but I am not. Not by any governmental or cultural body,” Brookins writes. “Every day, I negotiate the space between who I am, how I’m perceived, and what I need to unlearn. People have assumed things about me, and I can’t change that. Every day, I am assumed to be a Black American man, though my ID says ‘female,’ and my heart says neither of the sort. What does it mean—to be a girl-turned-man when you’re something else entirely?” 

Informed by KB Brookins’s personal experiences growing up in Texas, those of other Black transgender masculine people, Black queer studies, and cultural criticism, Pretty is concerned with the marginalization suffered by a unique American constituency—whose condition is a world apart from that of cisgender, non-Black, and non-masculine people. Here is a memoir (a bildungsroman of sorts) about coming to terms with instantly and always being perceived as “other”

KB BROOKINS is a Black, queer, and trans writer and cultural worker from Texas. They are the author of Freedom House and How to Identify Yourself with a Wound. Brookins has poems, essays, and installation art published in Academy of American Poets, Teen Vogue, Poetry Magazine, Prizer Arts & Letters, OkayplayerPoetry Society of America, Autostraddle, and other venues. They have earned fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, PEN America, Equality Texas, and others.

Kemi Alabi is the author of Against Heaven (Graywolf Press, 2022), selected by Claudia Rankine as winner of the Academy of American Poets First Book Award. The collection was a Kate Tufts Discovery Award finalist, Chicago Review of Books Award winner, and one of New York Public Library’s Best Books of 2022. Alabi’s poems appear in The AtlanticThe NationPoetryBoston Review and Best New Poets. They’re coeditor of The Echoing Ida Collection (Feminist Press, 2021) and a Periplus Collective mentor. Born in Wisconsin on a Sunday in July, they now live in Chicago, IL.

Accessibility: This event is hosted at the bookstore, which is a wheelchair accessible space. Masks are required. Seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis. To request ASL interpretation for this event, please email events@womenandchildrenfirst.com by no later than 14 days before the event. For other questions or access needs, please email events@womenandchildrenfirst.com.

Event date: 
Tuesday, July 2, 2024 - 7:00pm to 8:30pm
Event address: 
5233 N Clark Street
Pretty: A Memoir By KB Brookins Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780593537145
Availability: On our shelves recently
Published: Knopf - May 28th, 2024

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