Edited and with an introduction written and read by Roxane Gay, the New York Times best-selling and deeply beloved author of Bad Feminist and Hunger, this anthology of first-person essays read by all 30 contributors including Gabrielle Union, Ally Sheedy, and Lyz Lenz, tackles rape, assault, and harassment head-on.
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In this valuable and revealing anthology, cultural critic and best-selling author Roxane Gay collects original and previously published pieces that address what it means to live in a world where women have to measure the harassment, violence, and aggression they face, and where they are "routinely second-guessed, blown off, discredited, denigrated, besmirched, belittled, patronized, mocked, shamed, gaslit, insulted, bullied" for speaking out. Contributions include essays from established and up-and-coming writers, performers, and critics, including actors Ally Sheedy and Gabrielle Union and writers Amy Jo Burns, Lyz Lenz, and Claire Schwartz.
Covering a wide range of topics and experiences, from an exploration of the rape epidemic embedded in the refugee crisis to first-person accounts of child molestation, this collection is often deeply personal and is always unflinchingly honest. Like Rebecca Solnit's Men Explain Things to Me, Not That Bad will resonate with every listener, saying "something in totality that we cannot say alone."
Searing and heartbreakingly candid, this provocative collection both reflects the world we live in and offers a call to arms insisting that "not that bad" must no longer be good enough.
Narrators include: Roxane Gay, Gabrielle Union, Ally Sheedy, Amy Jo Burns, Lyz Lenz, Claire Schwartz, Aubrey Hirsch, Jill Christman, Lynn Melnick, Brandon Taylor, Emma Smith-Stevens, A.J. McKenna, Lisa Mecham, Vanessa Mártir, xTx, Sophie Mayer, Nora Salem, V.L. Seek, Michelle Chen, Liz Rosema, Anthony Frame, Samhita Mukhopadhyay, Miriam Zoila Pérez, Zoe Medeiros, Sharisse Tracey, Stacey May Fowles, Elisabeth Fairfield Stokes, Meredith Talusan, Nicole Boyce, and Elissa Bassist.
Roxane Gay is the author of the essay collection Bad Feminist, which was a New York Times bestseller; the novel An Untamed State, a finalist for the Dayton Peace Prize; the memoir Hunger, which was a New York Times bestseller and received a National Book Critics Circle citation; and the short story collections Difficult Women and Ayiti. A contributing opinion writer to the New York Times, she has also written for Time, McSweeney’s, the Virginia Quarterly Review, the Los Angeles Times, The Nation, The Rumpus, Bookforum, and Salon. Her fiction has also been selected for The Best American Short Stories 2012, The Best American Mystery Stories 2014, and other anthologies. She is the author of World of Wakanda for Marvel. She lives in Lafayette, Indiana, and sometimes Los Angeles.
Gabrielle Union is an actress, executive producer, activist, best-selling author and most recently, a Time100 cover honoree. Union formed her production shingle “I’ll Have Another” in 2018 with the goal of telling stories that center marginalized communities with their specific point of views in an authentic manner. In August of 2020, she relaunched her haircare brand “Flawless by Gabrielle Union” for women with textured hair. The new and improved collection includes an array of options, affordably priced between $4 - $10, that empowers consumers to customize a regimen specific to their texture and style preferences. Prior to relaunching Flawless, Union learned of the disparities in the food space and joined Bitsy's as a cofounder with the goal of making healthy, allergen- friendly, school-safe snacks that are accessible and affordable for all families regardless of their socioeconomic or geographical status. Her first book, We’re Going To Need More Wine: Stories That Are Funny, Complicated and True, was released in 2017 and instantly became a New York Times best seller. Union serves as a leader and advocate for inclusion in the entertainment industry. She is also a champion of breast health and combating sexual violence.