Juno DawsonOn Tuesday 29th June, an author from Brighton, Juno Dawson, gave a virtual lecture about her story and her most recent books, ‘What’s the T?’ and ‘Wonderland’. 

Juno Dawson is transgender and began by explaining her story and the realisation that she no longer wanted to identify as ‘James’ but as ‘Juno’. A year ago, she visited us in person and introduced her book, ‘Meat Market’, about the truth behind the modelling industry which I have now read and highly recommend. She gave a reading from her book ‘Wonderland’ (May 2020) which is about a girl at boarding school realising that she is transgender. She also gave a book reading from ‘What’s the T?’, which gives an insight into what it is like to be transgender or non-binary in the 21st century.

In order to gather all the information necessary to write these books, Juno carried out extensive research and she made it clear that she didn’t want to be the only spokesperson discussing being transgender, but wanted to hear other stories and attempt to capture them in her eye-opening books. She gave us plenty of time to ask some questions and one which I found particularly interesting was what she thought about the age at which a child could legally transition. This topic has frequently been in the news and her response was one that I wouldn’t have expected. She used the example of a teenager wanting breast implants and how doctors do not allow this because their bodies have not naturally developed yet; she said it was a very reasonable argument not to want to operate until they are an adult. However, she also reflected on surgeries after puberty and discussed the use of puberty blockers. I can say with confidence that the Sixth Form all thoroughly enjoyed this lecture and I personally thought that it was a valuable insight into important issues.

Rosie (Year 12)