Know My Name|Review

Know My Name – Published 2019

“She was known to the world as Emily Doe when she stunned millions with a letter. Brock Turner had been sentenced to just six months in county jail after he was found sexually assaulting her on Stanford’s campus. Her victim impact statement was posted on BuzzFeed, where it instantly went viral–viewed by eleven million people within four days, it was translated globally and read on the floor of Congress; it inspired changes in California law and the recall of the judge in the case. Thousands wrote to say that she had given them the courage to share their own experiences of assault for the first time.

Now she reclaims her identity to tell her story of trauma, transcendence, and the power of words. It was the perfect case, in many ways–there were eyewitnesses, Turner ran away, physical evidence was immediately secured. But her struggles with isolation and shame during the aftermath and the trial reveal the oppression victims face in even the best-case scenarios. Her story illuminates a culture biased to protect perpetrators, indicts a criminal justice system designed to fail the most vulnerable, and, ultimately, shines with the courage required to move through suffering and live a full and beautiful life.

Know My Name will forever transform the way we think about sexual assault, challenging our beliefs about what is acceptable and speaking truth to the tumultuous reality of healing. It also introduces readers to an extraordinary writer, one whose words have already changed our world. Entwining pain, resilience, and humor, this memoir will stand as a modern classic.” – Goodreads


This memoir is incredible. It is gut wrenching and incredibly hard to listen to at times (I did the audio, which is narrated by Chanel Miller herself), but that is exactly the point. This book is not for me to review, but rather to recommend. It shines light on the flaws in our justice system and how we, as a society, treat victims.

Why would she drink so much? My child would never get blackout drunk at a party. Was she enjoying it? He said she enjoyed it. Look at how remorseful this young man is. He was also drunk. His life is now ruined. Why was she alone? Why was she at a party when she graduated already? What did she expect when she went to a frat party? These are things people actually commented on articles about Chanel’s sexual assault.

If you didn’t already think Brock Turner was a piece of shit, you definitely will after reading this. Chanel’s life, like so many others, was completely changed because of her assault. If you don’t want your life to be changed by being arrested, jailed and labeled a sex offender, don’t sexually assault someone.

Before she was named, Joe Biden (VP at the time), wrote an open letter to her. When she read a piece of it in her book (another reason I recommend the audio), it stopped me in my tracks. I ended up looking up the entire letter, and I am linking it here. I am so thankful for our President elect, and truly hope he can aid in some obviously necessary change in our country. We have a lot of work to do.

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