Groundbreaking in its depictions of joy and community, Authentic Selves celebrates trans and nonbinary people and their families in stunning photographs and their own words. Foreword by transgender activist Jazz Jennings and her mom and fellow activist, Jeanette Jennings.
So often trans and nonbinary people's stories are told only through the lens of their struggles and challenges, including their political battles for legal rights, but trans and nonbinary people live rich and fulfilling lives full of joy and community too. Authentic Selves: Celebrating Trans and Nonbinary People and Their Families is a sweeping compilation of life stories and portraits of trans and nonbinary people, as well as their partners, parents, children, siblings, and chosen family members.
The compelling stories in Authentic Selves provide a glimpse into the real lives, both the challenges and the triumphs, of these remarkable people and their families-people like Senator Sarah McBride, disability justice advocate Parker Glick, drag entertainer TAYLOR ALXNDR, September 11th first responder Jozeppi Angelo Morelli, model Lana Patel, youth activist Elliott Bertrand, and so many others--all of whom are working to create a more just, diverse, and compassionate world.
Developed in collaboration with PFLAG National and Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund.
Peggy Gillespie, MA, CSW, is the cofounder and director of Family Diversity Projects, a nonprofit organization devoted to helping eliminate prejudice, stereotyping, bullying, and harassment of people who are discriminated against due to sexual orientation, gender identity, race, national origin, religion, and disabilities of all kinds. The organization tells the stories of real people presented in award-winning traveling photo and text exhibits. These exhibits tour communities nationwide in schools, universities, houses of worship, libraries, workplaces, museums, and other institutions. Gillespie is the editor of all of the exhibits and books, including Love Makes a Family: Portraits of LGBT People and their Families, among others. She is also an actress and performed recently in the award-winning show A 24-Decade History of Popular Music starring Taylor Mac. Jazz Jennings is the star of the award-winning TLC documentary series I Am Jazz. She is a twenty-one-year-old LGBTQ rights activist, author, and a student at Harvard University. Jazz wasn't allowed to use the girls' restroom in her elementary school for five years and was prohibited from playing girls' soccer in her state for more than 2 years. After a long battle, the United States Soccer Federation (USSF) created a policy to include all transgender athletes who want to play soccer. In 2021, The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History in Washington DC opened an exhibit called Girlhood . . . It's Complicated, which included Jazz's life story, making her the first transgender girl to be featured as an historical figure. Jeanette Jennings is married to her soulmate Greg and a proud mom of four adult children. Jeanette spreads her message of unconditional love and acceptance through media and speaking engagements all over the United States and is the Co-founder and President of the Transkids Purple Rainbow Foundation, which helps to support transgender youth.