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Drawing Power: Women's Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival

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More than 60 female comics creators share their personal experiences with sexual violence and harassment through new and original comics Inspired by the global #MeToo Movement, Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival is a collection of original, nonfiction comics drawn by more than 60 female cartoonists from around the world. Featuring su More than 60 female comics creators share their personal experiences with sexual violence and harassment through new and original comics Inspired by the global #MeToo Movement, Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival is a collection of original, nonfiction comics drawn by more than 60 female cartoonists from around the world. Featuring such noted creators as Emil Ferris, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, MariNaomi, Liana Finck, and Ebony Flowers the anthology’s contributors comprise a diverse group of many ages, sexual orientations, and races—and their personal stories convey the wide spectrum of sexual harassment and abuse that is still all too commonplace. With a percentage of profits going to RAINN, Drawing Power is an anthology that stokes the fires of progressive social upheaval, in the fight for a better, safer world. Full list of contributors: Rachel Ang, Zoe Belsinger, Jennifer Camper, Caitlin Cass, Tyler Cohen, Marguerite Dabaie, Soumya Dhulekar, Wallis Eates, Trinidad Escobar, Kat Fajardo, Joyce Farmer, Emil Ferris, Liana Finck, Sarah Firth, Mary Fleener, Ebony Flowers, Claire Folkman, Noel Franklin Katie Fricas, Siobhán Gallagher, Joamette Gil, J. Gonzalez-Blitz, Georgiana Goodwin, Roberta Gregory, Marian Henley, Soizick Jaffre Avy Jetter, Sabba Khan, Kendra Josie Kirkpatrick, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Nina Laden, Miss Lasko-Gross, Carol Lay, Miriam Libicki Sarah Lightman, LubaDalu, Ajuan Mance, MariNaomi, Lee Marrs, Liz Mayorga, Lena Merhej, Bridget Meyne, Carta Monir, Hila Noam Diane Noomin, Breena Nuñez, Meg O’Shea, Corinne Pearlman, Cathrin Peterslund, Minnie Phan, Kelly Phillips, Powerpaola, Sarah Allen Reed, Kaylee Rowena, Ariel Schrag, M. Louise Stanley, Maria Stoian, Nicola Streeten, Marcela Trujillo, Carol Tyler, Una, Lenora Yerkes, Ilana Zeffren      


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More than 60 female comics creators share their personal experiences with sexual violence and harassment through new and original comics Inspired by the global #MeToo Movement, Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival is a collection of original, nonfiction comics drawn by more than 60 female cartoonists from around the world. Featuring su More than 60 female comics creators share their personal experiences with sexual violence and harassment through new and original comics Inspired by the global #MeToo Movement, Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival is a collection of original, nonfiction comics drawn by more than 60 female cartoonists from around the world. Featuring such noted creators as Emil Ferris, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, MariNaomi, Liana Finck, and Ebony Flowers the anthology’s contributors comprise a diverse group of many ages, sexual orientations, and races—and their personal stories convey the wide spectrum of sexual harassment and abuse that is still all too commonplace. With a percentage of profits going to RAINN, Drawing Power is an anthology that stokes the fires of progressive social upheaval, in the fight for a better, safer world. Full list of contributors: Rachel Ang, Zoe Belsinger, Jennifer Camper, Caitlin Cass, Tyler Cohen, Marguerite Dabaie, Soumya Dhulekar, Wallis Eates, Trinidad Escobar, Kat Fajardo, Joyce Farmer, Emil Ferris, Liana Finck, Sarah Firth, Mary Fleener, Ebony Flowers, Claire Folkman, Noel Franklin Katie Fricas, Siobhán Gallagher, Joamette Gil, J. Gonzalez-Blitz, Georgiana Goodwin, Roberta Gregory, Marian Henley, Soizick Jaffre Avy Jetter, Sabba Khan, Kendra Josie Kirkpatrick, Aline Kominsky-Crumb, Nina Laden, Miss Lasko-Gross, Carol Lay, Miriam Libicki Sarah Lightman, LubaDalu, Ajuan Mance, MariNaomi, Lee Marrs, Liz Mayorga, Lena Merhej, Bridget Meyne, Carta Monir, Hila Noam Diane Noomin, Breena Nuñez, Meg O’Shea, Corinne Pearlman, Cathrin Peterslund, Minnie Phan, Kelly Phillips, Powerpaola, Sarah Allen Reed, Kaylee Rowena, Ariel Schrag, M. Louise Stanley, Maria Stoian, Nicola Streeten, Marcela Trujillo, Carol Tyler, Una, Lenora Yerkes, Ilana Zeffren      

30 review for Drawing Power: Women's Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival

  1. 4 out of 5

    Rod Brown

    Powerful testimony to the shitty behavior of men and the strength of the women who have suffered it, survived it, and stood up to tell their stories.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Robert

    Excellent, powerful, infuriating, sometimes even downright lovely comics by a truly impressive array of comics artists, including some personal favorites and several folks whose work I was previously unfamiliar with but quite impressed by. My more in-depth review is now up at tcj: http://www.tcj.com/reviews/drawing-po... Excellent, powerful, infuriating, sometimes even downright lovely comics by a truly impressive array of comics artists, including some personal favorites and several folks whose work I was previously unfamiliar with but quite impressed by. My more in-depth review is now up at tcj: http://www.tcj.com/reviews/drawing-po...

  3. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    Actual rating: 4.5 stars This is a really amazing collection for both it’s breadth and its depth. The anecdotes shared cover a wide range of experiences -- from one artist’s 12-year older daughter’s “no” being ignored by a male classmate to another who’s repeatedly raped by her brother -- by a wide range of voices: queer, trans, non-binary, POC, those living in and outside the US, etc. I saw myself in a lot of these anecdotes. I was raped when I was 23-years old by a friend’s boyfriend. When I was Actual rating: 4.5 stars This is a really amazing collection for both it’s breadth and its depth. The anecdotes shared cover a wide range of experiences -- from one artist’s 12-year older daughter’s “no” being ignored by a male classmate to another who’s repeatedly raped by her brother -- by a wide range of voices: queer, trans, non-binary, POC, those living in and outside the US, etc. I saw myself in a lot of these anecdotes. I was raped when I was 23-years old by a friend’s boyfriend. When I was 11, a family friend molested me and attempted to rape me. Without going in to too much detail, neither of these situations were a “typical” rape/assault experience and I didn’t feel like a “typical” victim. For years, I wondered if I was even a “real” victim, blamed myself for what happened to me, and minimized what happened because I didn’t think the incidents were traumatic enough (whatever that means). These stories also don’t cover the innumerable instances of gender-based harassment I’ve faced at the workplace as a public librarian. I knew that rape, assault, and harassment happened to other people, but I wasn’t accustomed to sharing my story and as a young 20-something year old, was only just starting to see this discourse happening online. Works like this break the silence and shatter preconceived notions like the ones I had. No one should be forced to share their stories but those who can and do are helping many. So, needless to say, I highly recommend this. Huge trigger warnings, but if you’re in a healthy place, this is 100% worth reading. I’ve discovered a lot of artists I’d like to look further into too, which is always a bonus with anthologies.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Oriana

    What led me here: "Body of work: how the graphic novel became an outlet for female shame" by Kristen Radtke in The Guardian. What led me here: "Body of work: how the graphic novel became an outlet for female shame" by Kristen Radtke in The Guardian.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

    Each individual story is powerful, but as a collection, it's awesome and devastating, as well as inclusive along all sorts of axes. I had to take my time with this collection as I found it brutal to not take a break between stories. I'm surprised that there weren't more well-known contributors (although there certainly are a few), but this was a great opportunity to be exposed to new-to-me artists. Each individual story is powerful, but as a collection, it's awesome and devastating, as well as inclusive along all sorts of axes. I had to take my time with this collection as I found it brutal to not take a break between stories. I'm surprised that there weren't more well-known contributors (although there certainly are a few), but this was a great opportunity to be exposed to new-to-me artists.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Trevor

    This is an extraordinary collection that I cannot recommend enough. Especially to men. We need to know what women go through, fellas. Here's a very easy way to hear a bunch of stories about the awful experiences women have in regards to sexual violence. And I was delighted to find so many creators that were new to me. All but one of the contributors I had not heard of before. And this book is just full of incredible work. Check it out! This is an extraordinary collection that I cannot recommend enough. Especially to men. We need to know what women go through, fellas. Here's a very easy way to hear a bunch of stories about the awful experiences women have in regards to sexual violence. And I was delighted to find so many creators that were new to me. All but one of the contributors I had not heard of before. And this book is just full of incredible work. Check it out!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Hannah Garden

    This is a hell of a collection.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    This is a very depressing, yet inspiring compeliation book about rape, and sexual assault, and all things that have been done to women. It is each woman’s story. The best way to sum up this very powerful book, is to comment on the comment one of the chracters makes after the daughter bites someone because they wouldn’t stop harassing them. “Sometimes, a person just got to be bit.” There are some really horrid men out there, and the cartoonists lay it all bare, so to speak. Highly recommended, but b This is a very depressing, yet inspiring compeliation book about rape, and sexual assault, and all things that have been done to women. It is each woman’s story. The best way to sum up this very powerful book, is to comment on the comment one of the chracters makes after the daughter bites someone because they wouldn’t stop harassing them. “Sometimes, a person just got to be bit.” There are some really horrid men out there, and the cartoonists lay it all bare, so to speak. Highly recommended, but be prepared to be outraged.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Tina Economou

    Best book I've read all year. Definitely took awhile to read...I had to pause after each story. This collection really shows how powerful visual storytelling can be...how it can capture experiences in really nuanced ways. Also, this book introduced me to dozens of artists I wasn't familiar with. Best book I've read all year. Definitely took awhile to read...I had to pause after each story. This collection really shows how powerful visual storytelling can be...how it can capture experiences in really nuanced ways. Also, this book introduced me to dozens of artists I wasn't familiar with.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Csimplot Simplot

    Excellent book!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Samantha Puc

    Check out my full review of this powerful, evocative anthology at The Beat: Click here. Check out my full review of this powerful, evocative anthology at The Beat: Click here.

  12. 5 out of 5

    c.s.

    "what would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? the world would split open." -muriel ruckeyser "what would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? the world would split open." -muriel ruckeyser

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jenn Adams

    Wow. This was a really powerful look at how pervasive sexual violence and/or harassment of women is. Each piece was a brief peek into experiences from a female comics life. These ranged from problematic encounters to severe abuse. Each artist brought her own personal style, which was nice because if one doesn't click, you know the next will be completely different. It's upsetting how long this was and knowing that so many other women could have added on as well. Wow. This was a really powerful look at how pervasive sexual violence and/or harassment of women is. Each piece was a brief peek into experiences from a female comics life. These ranged from problematic encounters to severe abuse. Each artist brought her own personal style, which was nice because if one doesn't click, you know the next will be completely different. It's upsetting how long this was and knowing that so many other women could have added on as well.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Yates

    Great anthology of the all-too-common experience of sexual violence. In the introduction, Roxane Gay talks about the importance of visual communication for people to make sense of things beyond language, and it’s clear many have used this as a means to do just that. Lots of familiar and new voices here, I am especially looking forward to seeing more work from Trinidad Escobar and Sabba Khan.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Robynn

    This an important collection with some great artists but with the short page number for each story, I was left wanting more.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Louis Skye

    Very good but harrowing read. So many stories, familiar, resonant, deeply disturbing, beautifully drawn. Definitely need to read something fun after this, though.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Saoirse

    ... wow...

  18. 4 out of 5

    Denise Larson

    Timely and important book for the #metoo times. Graphic artists tell their stories and we are able to connect the visual with the words. It took me a long time to get through this book because the stories often hit an emotional chord and I had take a break to allow my emotive gut reaction to heal.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Caroline

    A beautifully-illustrated book full of unique and heart-rending stories. Sometimes funny, other times serious, this is definitely something I want to look at again and again! The content is heavy but meaningful, and I could relate many of the stories shared in this collection because of experiences that have happened to me or those I know. It is definitely a worthwhile read, and gives a valuable insight into the minds of women who have suffered trauma and are still experiencing the ramifications A beautifully-illustrated book full of unique and heart-rending stories. Sometimes funny, other times serious, this is definitely something I want to look at again and again! The content is heavy but meaningful, and I could relate many of the stories shared in this collection because of experiences that have happened to me or those I know. It is definitely a worthwhile read, and gives a valuable insight into the minds of women who have suffered trauma and are still experiencing the ramifications from that.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Sehar Moughal

    A gem of a book. Not an easy read on a smaller device as some of the comic writing is too small.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Victoria

    Compelling, gorgeous, powerful graphic stories of survival.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kirsten

    oof.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Anne Jaconette

    Have only made it through about a quarter of the comics in this book but am amazed by the resilience of the creators to share. Beautiful book and exceptionally created.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Franchesca

    Powerful words and images from women of various backgrounds about their own personal experiences with sexual violence and harassment. Some are very blunt, some more subtle, and others use metaphor, but each is powerful in teaching us about the dangers in the world and society today and showing us that we all have the power to heal even if others don't always understand our process. Each person has their own coping skills for dealing with trauma and this book really highlights that. I won this big Powerful words and images from women of various backgrounds about their own personal experiences with sexual violence and harassment. Some are very blunt, some more subtle, and others use metaphor, but each is powerful in teaching us about the dangers in the world and society today and showing us that we all have the power to heal even if others don't always understand our process. Each person has their own coping skills for dealing with trauma and this book really highlights that. I won this big, beautiful book in a Goodreads giveaway!

  25. 4 out of 5

    Little

    There are approximately eleventy-bazillion stories in this collection. Some of them are horrifying. Some of them are revolting. Some of them are bizarre. A lot of them are depictions of the banal, everyday, ordinary results of a culture that tolerates and even promotes toxic expressions of masculinity. It's not fun to read, but it's somewhat validating. Hopefully shedding light will make these stories less ubiquitous for my daughter's generation. There are approximately eleventy-bazillion stories in this collection. Some of them are horrifying. Some of them are revolting. Some of them are bizarre. A lot of them are depictions of the banal, everyday, ordinary results of a culture that tolerates and even promotes toxic expressions of masculinity. It's not fun to read, but it's somewhat validating. Hopefully shedding light will make these stories less ubiquitous for my daughter's generation.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Mark Robison

    What a glorious and fascinating range of stories, emotions, and styles. And time frames — from decades ago to recent events. A lot of stories reminded me of Christine Blasey Ford's memory of Brett Kavanaugh. I was inspired to seek out the full-length work of many artists in here. If you have any interest in feminism and graphic novels, you'll want to check this out. One story made me bookmark it. The artist was teaching at an all-girls school where a guest speaker — not long after the start of th What a glorious and fascinating range of stories, emotions, and styles. And time frames — from decades ago to recent events. A lot of stories reminded me of Christine Blasey Ford's memory of Brett Kavanaugh. I was inspired to seek out the full-length work of many artists in here. If you have any interest in feminism and graphic novels, you'll want to check this out. One story made me bookmark it. The artist was teaching at an all-girls school where a guest speaker — not long after the start of the #MeToo movement — said something that the students took as victim-blaming: "Remember your self-respect. Don't let men in power take advantage of you." They stiffened at these words and wanted to shut down the speaker. The artist says she understands the girls and part of her was proud of them, while another part understood the speaker. She'd had a professor who was very grabby and did it to lots of women, and she put up with it for years. She knew the groping was not her fault, but she also knew she could've handled it differently. And then Junot Díaz came to town and she was excited but then allegations started coming out about him. Her book group sat down and talked it through. We ended the discussion with more questions than answers. And I was proud and grateful to be part of a community of women who listen, and remain inquisitive in the face of ambiguity. Too much of history is based on men who pretend to know. #MeToo deserves more than gut reactions and crystal-clear opinions. It deserves nuance." I need to remember that, too.

  27. 4 out of 5

    PvOberstein

    Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival (edited by Diane Noomin) is basically the comic form of the #MeToo movement. It is an anthology of dozens of short comics describing experiences of sexual harassment and assault, in forms and styles as varies as the creators themselves. It’s difficult to review an anthology, but it’s a credit to Noomin’s editorship that the book came together as well as it did, arranging different narrative and artistic styles without any Drawing Power: Women’s Stories of Sexual Violence, Harassment, and Survival (edited by Diane Noomin) is basically the comic form of the #MeToo movement. It is an anthology of dozens of short comics describing experiences of sexual harassment and assault, in forms and styles as varies as the creators themselves. It’s difficult to review an anthology, but it’s a credit to Noomin’s editorship that the book came together as well as it did, arranging different narrative and artistic styles without any one of them feeling out of place. Some of the stories rely heavily on abstraction and symbolism, others are viscerally concrete. The comics are short – none are more than a few pages at most – and (generally) forgo elongated biographies. Some focus on moments of violence, some on the days that follow, some take place years down the road. There is no single experience, but a quilt of them. Many of the artists publish in independent zines, which I regrettably don’t know much about. The only artist I was already familiar with was Emil Ferris, whose story closes out the anthology, told in the format of her inimitable graphic novel My Favorite Thing is Monsters . The sheer breadth of experiences, and the ways in which they are retold, makes this a powerful work, but definitely not an easy one.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Clint

    This isn't a critique of the work as much as it's a review of how much I enjoyed this anthology. I couldn't finish it. The stories are so short and they tell much of the same content. Indeed, that's the point. As much as the #metoo movement that preceded it, the sheer volume of the stories is itself a statement. But there's one sentiment from one of these stories that really struck a cord with why I couldn't bring myself to read this whole volume: "I almost threw up making this comic." Each of the This isn't a critique of the work as much as it's a review of how much I enjoyed this anthology. I couldn't finish it. The stories are so short and they tell much of the same content. Indeed, that's the point. As much as the #metoo movement that preceded it, the sheer volume of the stories is itself a statement. But there's one sentiment from one of these stories that really struck a cord with why I couldn't bring myself to read this whole volume: "I almost threw up making this comic." Each of these reads like a work of catharsis. Something you might get on the paper to try and exorcise. Coming across one of these on a friend's desk or in a collection of their work it would hit you harder, give you more pause. Gathered up in their brevity, the collective impact of these stories feels lessened somehow. And a more in-depth view of these true stories would just be cruel to try and extract. That said, I'm certain with the myriad of voices and the spanning of decades that there's a story somewhere in this anthology that will speak to you. Or maybe just the same story from a unique person (this collection does an excellent job of being intersectional). These are the two that stood out and really struck a chord with me: The Verdict - Marian Henley Placebo - Kendra Josie Kirkpatrick Ready To Pop - Carta Monir

  29. 4 out of 5

    Kate Ringer

    This book was powerful in it's familiarity. Every woman has experienced something like what's detailed in these pages. What's horrifying is how normalized it is - how a man grabs your ass, and it's just another night out. My favorite comic in the collection was, "Surprise Bogs." A teacher remembers the sexual harassment she faced on a daily basis from her professor in college. She wonders why she never did anything to stop it. This experience informs conversations she has with her students about This book was powerful in it's familiarity. Every woman has experienced something like what's detailed in these pages. What's horrifying is how normalized it is - how a man grabs your ass, and it's just another night out. My favorite comic in the collection was, "Surprise Bogs." A teacher remembers the sexual harassment she faced on a daily basis from her professor in college. She wonders why she never did anything to stop it. This experience informs conversations she has with her students about the #MeToo movement. Sometimes we treat these issues like they're all black and white. They are not. Can we have conversations about speaking up against aggressors and not be victim-blaming? Reminds me of something I read in "opposition" to the #MeToo movement about the right to be harassed. We are all on the same side in the end; we all want people's bodies and minds to be safe, but there are certainly different ideas about how that can be achieved, or even what that looks like. We should continue to have those conversations. Lastly, the art is incredible. So many artists!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Katie Minion

    Wow. This was really powerful. It was an impulse purchase when my husband went into a comic shop, and I'm really glad I snagged it. The #metoo stories varied - some were subtle, some were overt, some were violent, some were psychological. The thing I noticed about most of them was how people's reactions to these individuals' stories of sexual violence really set the tone whether they'd want to report it then or in the future. We need to take women's (and all people's) concerns about sexual haras Wow. This was really powerful. It was an impulse purchase when my husband went into a comic shop, and I'm really glad I snagged it. The #metoo stories varied - some were subtle, some were overt, some were violent, some were psychological. The thing I noticed about most of them was how people's reactions to these individuals' stories of sexual violence really set the tone whether they'd want to report it then or in the future. We need to take women's (and all people's) concerns about sexual harassment seriously and recognize that it doesn't all look like date-rape-at-the-club. It can be as subtle as unwanted attention, like your 10+ years older bus driver giving you flowers in college (which is what happened to me). I'd be happy to pass this book onto somebody else who wants to read it. If you know me, message me and I can figure out how to get it to you.

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