Review: The Body is Not an Apology: The Power of Radical Self-Love
Title: The Body is Not an Apology
Author: Sonya Renee Taylor
Published: 6 February 2018
Format: Paperback, SearchOhio Library Book
Rating: 5/5 stars
Synopsis: A global movement guided by love
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.
My therapist suggested this book after I spent the majority of our session apologizing for anything and everything about myself that I could think of. Her suggestion was a gentle one, and while I normally pass on nonfiction books (I’ve already read one or two this year, which is good enough for me), I felt compelled to give this one a try because it sounded like a book I needed.
Honestly, The Body is Not An Apology was the book I needed. Taylor’s writing is gentle, affirming, honest, and inclusive. She does not promise readers a cure of any sort, but rather she provides readers with information, examples, and questions to reflect on. I liked that, unlike many nonfiction books, Taylor’s writing is easy to read and is not weighed down with 5-syllable words and relentless rambling.
I also enjoyed the different questions she proposed readers to reflect on. I actually took up writing in a journal to answer each question. Some were easy, others required a great deal of thought and time. Either way, I appreciated the challenge because it helped me appreciate myself and my body. Her writing and questions also challenged me to reflect on the ways in which I could have made someone else feel the need to apologize for their body.
Overall, this book was just what I needed. The writing style and information were easy to follow and especially fantastic to reflect on. I feel like I learned a lot, and I can see myself reading this book again in the future for a refresher on radical self love.