In 2015 the Stanford rape case made national headlines and captivated social media, causing many debates on-campus rape culture, drinking, and consent. Media outlets fixated on Brock Turner’s swim records, economic background, and career potential, bringing up real discussions on class and privilege in relation to criminal justice.
At the time she was known as Emily Doe, a woman found when two men chased Turner down after witnessing his attempt to rape her. The media painted Turner as a future surgeon and often mentioned his swim record in articles, while Emily Doe was a drinking party-goer. When the infamous case ended, Buzzfeed posted Emily Doe’s witness impact statement and it was shared over and over around the world resonating with so many survivors of sexual assault. Since then Chanel Miller has come forward as the survivor, she wants you to know her name because she, like others, are so much more than a survivor of sexual assault.
In the Fall of 2014 Chanel Miller woke up not knowing what happened to her or where she was. In this beautifully written memoir she describes the details of her life that followed. Miller’s memoir walks the reader through her firsthand account of being a survivor of sexual violence, the legal system, medical processes, relationship struggles, and her personal and emotional experiences. She encapsulates the experiences of many survivors, but also succinctly elaborates on the experiences of all women and how our culture continues to perpetuate sexual violence with how we respond individually and structurally.
Miller articulates how rape culture permeates our everyday lives and her book offers the ability to bear witness to her personal experience as a survivor of sexual assault. Readers will gain more understanding of the medical and legal processes in sexual assault cases through the eyes of a survivor. Know My Name provides a deeper understanding of how sexual violence impacts survivors, why victims don’t report, and how society should reframe the questions asked after rape and reconsider how sexual violence is treated in the university and criminal justice systems.
Who Should Read it?
- High school and College Students
- Social Workers