The Body Is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love (Paperback)
I chose this book as one of my summer staff picks. I should also preface that I generally enjoy psych/self-help/mind-and-body books (Year of Yes, Braving the Wilderness, You Are a Badass, and Big Magic are some of my favorites) so I knew this would be delectable going in.
Reader, I can't even tell you how highly I recommend this book. What was once just a tidbit of wisdom to her friend at a poetry-slam competition turned into a work, a manifesto, and a movement. The Body Is Not an Apology is a guide for anyone who has ever questioned the validity of their physical being. An intersectional, sex-positive, self-love manual is what you have in front of you. What are you even waiting for.
-- Sarah— From Sarah H. Staff Picks
"To build a world that works for everyone, we must first make the radical decision to love every facet of ourselves...'The body is not an apology' is the mantra we should all embrace."
--Kimberlé Crenshaw, legal scholar and founder and Executive Director, African American Policy Forum
"Taylor invites us to break up with shame, to deepen our literacy, and to liberate our practice of celebrating every body and never apologizing for this body that is mine and takes care of me so well."
--Alicia Garza, cocreator of the Black Lives Matter Global Network and Strategy + Partnerships Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance
"Her manifesto on radical self-love is life altering--required reading for anyone who struggles with body image."
--Claire Foster, Foreword Review
Humans are a varied and divergent bunch with all manner of beliefs, morals, and bodies. Systems of oppression thrive off our inability to make peace with difference and injure the relationship we have with our own bodies.
The Body Is Not an Apology offers radical self-love as the balm to heal the wounds inflicted by these violent systems. World-renowned activist and poet Sonya Renee Taylor invites us to reconnect with the radical origins of our minds and bodies and celebrate our collective, enduring strength. As we awaken to our own indoctrinated body shame, we feel inspired to awaken others and to interrupt the systems that perpetuate body shame and oppression against all bodies. When we act from this truth on a global scale, we usher in the transformative opportunity of radical self-love, which is the opportunity for a more just, equitable, and compassionate world--for us all.
About the Author
Sonya Renee Taylor is the founder and radical executive officer of TheBodyIsNotanApology.com. She has been featured on HBO, BET, MTV, NPR, PBS, and CNN and in the New York Times, New York Magazine, USA Today, Huffington Post, Vogue Australia, and many more.
“Poet and activist Taylor (A Little Truth on Your Shirt) packs important ideas into this concise volume on body empowerment. “Radical self-love is not a destination you are trying to get to; it is who you already are,” she counsels…The author’s sensible and empathetic tone will lend comfort to readers and help them to see that no matter what their body type, they are beautiful.”
“‘Survival is damn hard,’ Sonya Renee Taylor says in the introduction to her marvelous new book, The Body Is Not an Apology. A writer, poet, educator, and performer, Taylor brings the message that self-sacrifice and self-flagellation keep us from our highest good. Her manifesto on radical self-love is life altering—required reading for anyone who struggles with body image.”
-Claire Foster, Foreword Review
“What spiritual teachers like Marianne Williamson refer to as natural intelligence, Taylor calls “radical self-love”. She has a way with action-packed words. When others talk about negative body image, she responds with “the body is not an apology”. And she’s written a whole book in response to the question “How do we live our highest, most radically unapologetic lives?”… Covering topics like Body-Shame Origin Stories, Media Matters, Body Terrorism, Changing Hearts, and Unapologetic Agreements, Taylor seeks to put the history, politics, and solutions of this topic into a logical, organized, and motivating format.”
-Anna Jedrziewski, Retailing Insight
“From the moment I met Sonya Renee, I knew my life, my world, and the way I view myself and others around me would never be the same. The Body Is Not an Apology is essential reading for those of us who crave understanding and those who are already on the path to learning how beautiful and complex our bodies are. It will empower you with the tools to navigate a world that is often unkind to those of us who whether by choice or design don't adhere to society’s standard of beauty. Her words will echo in your heart, soul, and body just as they have in mine.”
—-Tess Holiday, Plus Model, Author & Founder of Eff Your Beauty Standards
“The Body Is Not an Apology is a gift, a blessing, a prayer, a reminder, a sacred text. In it, Taylor invites us to live in a world where different bodies are seen, affirmed, celebrated, and just. Taylor invites us to break up with shame, to deepen our literacy, and to liberate our practice of celebrating every body and never apologizing for this body that is mine and takes care of me so well. This book cracked me open in ways that I'm so grateful for. I know it will do the same for you.”
—Alicia Garza, cocreator of the Black Lives Matter Global Network and Strategy + Partnerships Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance
“The Body Is Not an Apology is a radical, merciful, transformational book that will give you deep insights, inspiration, and concrete tools for launching the revolution right inside your own beloved body. Written from deep experience, with a force of catalytic energy and so much love.”
—Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues and In the Body of the World
“In 2017, #thefirsttimeisawmyself was a trending hashtag and Netflix campaign. As a disabled woman, #thefirsttimeireadmyself may well have been this book. Thank you, Sonya. Bought two copies, one for me and one for my daughter.”
—Rebecca Cokely, Senior Fellow for Disability Policy, Center for American Progress, disability rights activist, and mom
“Sonya Renee Taylor is a treasure that this world simply does not deserve. The Body Is Not an Apology is the gift of radical love the world needs! We are all better off because of her presence, talent, compassion, and authentic work. Thank you, Sonya, for all that you do.”
—Jes Baker, aka The Militant Baker, author of Things No One Will Tell Fat Girls
“In these times, when the search for answers to the mounting injustices in our world seems to confound us, Sonya Renee Taylor offers a simple but powerful place to begin: recovering our relationship with our own bodies. To build a world that works for everyone, we must first make the radical decision to love every facet of ourselves. Through lucid and courageous self-revelation, Taylor shows us how to realize the revolutionary potential of self-love. The body is not an apology’ is the mantra we should all embrace.”
—Kimberlé Crenshaw, legal scholar and founder and Executive Director, African American Policy Forum