For many women, having the audacity to share their own story is a radical act. Over the past several years, we've had the privilege of getting to know Janet Mock — an activist and New York Times best-selling author — as she spreads knowledge and acceptance through her many projects, including Girls Like Us.
As a transgender woman of color, Mock knows the power of a personal narrative, which made her the ideal host of the #BlogHer17 Voices of the Year Community Keynote.
“Like so many of you, I am a storyteller creating content and stories and narratives that shift, evolve and challenge conversations about feminism, about race, about gender and about what it means to bring our full selves into the spaces that we enter and occupy," Mock told the audience.
She went on to explain that she has been "really busy over the past few weeks" with the launch of her new podcast, Never Before, which is a conversation series starring amazing women like "Queen Mother" Tina Knowles-Lawson, and "Auntie Maxine" — better known as Congresswoman Maxine Waters, as well as and Lena Dunham, who Mock described as "a dear friend.”
Mock also discussed the latest iteration of her storytelling — her new book Surpassing Certainty, which she referred to as "a memoir that explores the years of my life when I was searching for a purpose, a place and my own voice."
Voices of the Year honorees ranged from Leslie Mac and Marissa Jenae Johnson, founders of Safety Pin Box, to Katia Bishops of I Am The Milk Blog, who spoke about her experiences as an Israeli immigrant.
“You know what an accent is?" Bishops asked the audience. "A sign of bravery.”
The work of all of this year's honorees is available to read or watch on the BlogHer website.
"I hope sharing this experience together reenergizes each and every one of you as we go out into our communities and we plot and plan our next great works," Mock said.
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