Establishing herself as an accomplished confessional writer, Viv Albertine's second book is a searingly honest account of her life post-divorce as she settles in Hackney. Ultimately a study in family dynamics, negotiating identities as daughter, sister, mother while always being an outsider, the book is rich with insight and peppered with quotes from other writers such as Plath, Solnit, Rhys which add another layer to articulating this particular female experience. With extracts from her mother and father's diaries, Albertine documents the fallibility of memory and truth, the psychic legacy of her mother and the anger and resilience that informs her worldview.
To mark the recent paperback edition of her book, Trans: A Memoir, we're thrilled to welcome Juliet Jacques to Pages. She'll be in conversation with David Stubbs, author of 1996 and the End of History (Repeater, 2016).
In July 2012, aged thirty, Juliet Jacques underwent sex reassignment surgery—a process she chronicled with unflinching honesty in a serialised national newspaper column. Trans tells of her life to the present moment: a story of growing up, of defining yourself, and of the rapidly changing world of gender politics.
Fresh from university, eager to escape a dead-end job, she launches a career as a writer in a publishing culture dominated by London cliques and still figuring out the impact of the Internet. She navigates the treacherous waters of a world where, even in the liberal and feminist media, transgender identities go unacknowledged, misunderstood or worse. Yet through art, film, music, politics and football, Jacques starts to become the person she had only imagined, and begins the process of transition. Interweaving the personal with the political, her memoir is a powerful exploration of debates that comprise trans politics, issues which promise to redefine our understanding of what it means to be alive.