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A Memoir

Book - 2020
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Fairest is a memoir about a precocious boy with albinism, a "sun child" from a rural Philippine village, who would grow up to become a woman in America. Coping with the strain of parental neglect and the elusive promise of U.S. citizenship, Talusan found childhood comfort from her devoted grandmother, a grounding force as she was treated by others with special preference or public curiosity. As an immigrant to the United States, Talusan came to be perceived as white. An academic scholarship to Harvard provided access to elite circles of privilege but required Talusan to navigate through the complex spheres of race, class, sexuality, and her place within the gay community. She emerged as an artist and an activist questioning the boundaries of gender. Talusan realized she did not want to be confined to a prescribed role as a man, and transitioned to become a woman, despite the risk of losing a man she deeply loved. Throughout her journey, Talusan shares poignant and powerful episodes of desirability and love that will remind readers of works such as Call Me By Your Name and Giovanni's Room. Her evocative reflections will shift our own perceptions of love, identity, gender, and the fairness of life.
Publisher: [New York] : Viking, [2020]
ISBN: 9780525561309 (hardcover)
0525561307 (hardcover)
Branch Call Number: 305.30973 TAL
Characteristics: 310 pages ; 24 cm


From Library Staff

This illuminating coming-of-age memoir of boy with albinism who immigrates from a rural Philippine village and grows up to become a woman in America will challenge readers’ understanding of race, gender, and disability.

List - Pride 2020
kclsdavidab Jun 02, 2020

A memoir that follows the life of a boy, born albino in the Philippines, who becomes a Harvard graduate and transitions into becoming the woman she has always been. Life is a series of boundaries to cross. Also available in downloadable audiobook.

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Jun 07, 2020

In this memoir, Talusan, an albino trans Filipino-American, doesn’t just set forth on a story of being trans or an immigrant. “I was an outcast among outcasts.” From her childhood as a boy in the Philippines to her life as a gay Harvard student to becoming gender binary and then a trans woman, she has a lot to say about determining your self-identity. I felt editing could helped, the writing seemed weak at times for the amazing story she was telling. At times, the story was tedious, but she has so much of value to say.


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