Body Language: Writers on Identity, Physicality, and Making Space for Ourselves

Body Language: Writers on Identity, Physicality, and Making Space for Ourselves

Body Language: Writers on Identity, Physicality, and Making Space for Ourselves

Body Language: Writers on Identity, Physicality, and Making Space for Ourselves


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A kaleidoscopic anthology of essays published by Catapult magazine about the stories our bodies tell, and how we move within—and against—expectations of race, gender, health, and ability

Bodies are serious, irreverent, sexy, fragile, strong, political, and inseparable from our experiences and identities as human beings. Pushing the dialogue and confronting monolithic myths, this collection of essays tackles topics like weight, disability, desire, fertility, illness, and the embodied experience of race in deep, challenging ways.

Selected from the archives of Catapult magazine, the essays in Body Language affirm and challenge the personal and political conversations around human bodies from the perspectives of thirty writers diverse in race, age, gender, size, sexuality, health, ability, geography, and class—a brilliant group probing and speaking their own truths about their bodies and identities, refusing to submit to others’ expectations about how their bodies should look, function, and behave.

Covering a wide range of experiences—from art modeling as a Black woman to nostalgia for a brutalizing high school sport, from the frightening upheaval of cancer diagnoses to the small beauties of funeral sex—this collection is intelligent, sensitive, and unflinchingly candid. Through the power of personal narratives, as told by writers at all stages of their careers, Body Language reflects the many ways in which we understand and inhabit our bodies.

Featuring essays by A.E. Osworth, Andrea Ruggirello, Aricka Foreman, Austin Gilkeson, Bassey Ikpi, Bryan Washington, Callum Angus, Destiny O. Birdsong, Eloghosa Osunde, Forsyth Harmon, Gabrielle Bellot, Haley Houseman, Hannah Walhout, Jenny Tinghui Zhang, Jess Zimmerman, Kaila Philo, Karissa Chen, Kayla Whaley, Maggie Tokuda-Hall, Marcos Gonsalez, Marisa Crane, Melissa Hung, Natalie Lima, Nina Riggs, Rachel Charlene Lewis, Ross Showalter, s.e. smith, Sarah McEachern, Taylor Harris, and Toni Jensen.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781646221318
Publisher: Catapult
Publication date: 07/12/2022
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 171,015
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.00(d)

About the Author

NICOLE CHUNG is the author of All You Can Ever Know: A Memoir, a contributing writer at The Atlantic, and the former editor-in-chief of Catapult magazine.

MATT ORTILE is the author of The Groom Will Keep His Name and the executive editor of Catapult magazine.

Table of Contents

Introduction Nicole Chung Matt Ortile ix

The Crematorium Nina Riggs 3

When Your Body Is the Lesson Rachel Charlene Lewis 11

(Don't) Fear the Feeding Tube Kayla Whaley 17

View from the Football Field; or, What Happens When the Game Is Over Bryan Washington 29

Smother Me Natalie Lima 41

Don't Let It Bury You Eloghosa Osunde 51

Writing My Truth as a Deaf Queer Writer Ross Showalter 61

A Variant of Unknown Significance Taylor Harris 69

On the Camino de Santiago Andrea Ruggirello 79

In Certain Contexts, Out of Certain Mouths A. E. Osworth 87

Cut Knuckles Forsyth Harmon 99

Surviving Karen Medicine Destiny O. Birdsong 105

What I Did for the Chance to Have a Baby Someday Karissa Chen 117

The Small Beauty of Funeral Sex S. E. Smith 135

The Year of Breath Gabrielle Bellot 143

Papi Chulo Philosophies Marcos Gonsalez 157

Little Pink Feet Maggie Tokuda-Hall 169

Counting to Ten Without Numbers Sarah McEachern 177

In Praise of Fast Girls Who Just Want to Dance Aricka Foreman 189

Weathering Wyoming Jenny Tinghui Zhang 197

Attack of the Six-Foot Woman Hannah Walhout 205

The Privilege of Having Soft Hands Kaila Philo 225

Teshima Austin Gilkeson 231

In Utero, in a Pandemic Marisa Crane 239

To Swim Is to Endure Melissa Hung 251

The Climate of Gender Callum Angus 259

Mapping My Body with Sewing Patterns Haley E. D. Houseman 271

Women in the Fracklands Toni Jensen 279

Connecting the Dots Bassey Ikpi 293

It Doesn't Hurt, It Hurts All the Time Jess Zimmerman 297

Acknowledgments 313

About the Contributors 315

About the Editors 323

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