Chanel Miller’s raw, unflinching memoir, Know My Name, takes an in-depth look at Chanel’s high-profile sexual assault and subsequent years-long battle in court.
You may know Chanel Miller as Emily Doe, the unidentified woman who was sexually assaulted by Brock Turner while passed out behind a dumpster. Chanel knows herself as so much more – a lover, a fiercely protective sister, a young adult navigating her first job, a well-cared-for daughter, an artist – and soon, you will too.
Please take caution while reading Know My Name if any of the following topics may trigger you:
- Sexual assault
Without a doubt, Chanel Miller has a stunning, breathtakingly unique way with words. She writes with such clarity and grounded lyricism. To read Know My Name is to feel utterly moved, enraged, and hopeful. Chanel chose to use a platform that she never asked for and certainly never wanted for good; to support other survivors and bring light to the ways in which the American justice system (and society, in general) get taking action against sexual assault so so wrong.
Chanel delves not only into her assault and the trial, but also into how the assault and trial so irreversibly changed her life, her brain, her ability to feel safe. It affected her family, friends, relationships, career – everything. This depiction is so crystal clear and compelling; so often, the media focuses on the repercussions of sexual assault for the perpetrator, while the victim’s life is the one that has been changed most significantly.
The eloquence with which Chanel critiques the American court system and the inherent sexism running rampant within it is so eye-opening and captivating. Her brain is a treasure trove of metaphors that will shine a light on the parts of sexual assault victim experiences that have, until now, been left in the shadows. I like to think that any person who does not understand the injustices done to victims of sexual assault could read this book and really learn something, thanks to the clarity and passion Chanel has infused into every paragraph.
For these reasons, and so many more, I so highly recommend Know My Name. Give yourself time to get through this one, as it is both dense and intense – neither a negative, by any means. This is one of the most important pieces of nonfiction I’ve ever read, and I am so much better for it. *Also, definitely follow Chanel on Instagram @chanelmillerknowmyname – trust me.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for taking the time to read my thoughts on Know My Name. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the memoir in the comments or at my Instagram, @bookmarkedbya!