Graphic Novel Review: A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns, by Archie Bongiovanni and Tristan Jimerson.
by Brittany B. | 07/04/2018
Have you ever had someone tell you “I use They/Them pronouns” and you’re not sure how to use those pronouns? Or are you a non-binary, gender-queer, or gender-nonconforming individual who needs help explaining your pronouns to others? Or are you someone who understands pronouns but wants to be a better ally for their friends, family, and/or co-workers that use neutral pronouns? Are you sick of my questions yet?
If you answered yes to any of the above, or even if you answered no to any of them, I highly recommend reading A Quick & Easy Guide to They/Them Pronouns. This tiny book is 64 pages, costs $7.99, and is a great, neigh, fabulous resource! This book is a casually illustrated comic that tackles the use of they/them pronouns from the perspective of two friends, one who is non-binary and the other who is a cisgender male, why they/them pronouns are important, and how to implement them not only in your personal life, but your professional workplace as well.
Having the perspectives of both non-binary and cis-gender authors is key to how relatable the book is – it uses experiences from non-binary and cis folks to tackle using people’s proper pronouns. It showcases the frustration and emotional/mental labor of non-binary folks who are constantly misgendered and shows cis-gendered folks navigating and advocating for their non-binary friends and/or co-workers.
The thing I love most about this book is that it is empathetic to the learning curve of using they/them pronouns but also doesn’t let people off of the hook. It wants to hold the reader accountable for using people’s proper pronouns and shows how much an asshat you are if you refuse to use them (and how harmful it can be to those who ask you to use their they/them pronouns). It explains how to hold people accountable, how to make your everyday vocabulary more inclusive, and touches on when to fight for your correct pronouns to be used and when to possibly let go of relationships with people who refuse to use them.
With it being such a short comic, there isn’t much more to say about this book! The only downsides to the book is that:
- Some people may not like the art style; and
- That it is only a basic guide to they/them pronouns.
But those, to me, aren’t actual negatives or downsides to this book. This book is a great starting point for people new to pronouns, it’s got good key points for those familiar, but not fluent, and it has good suggestions for those fluent in pronouns and how to teach others and make spaces more inclusive. And, it is only $7.99! It’s cheap enough to buy a few copies and pass them around!
The book is available on major websites but remember to buy local if you can! I bought my copy at Olympic Cards & Comics (AKA, Gabby’s). By buying locally, you’re supporting local shops and economy and your community while also showing a demand for LGBTQ+ content.
This post sounds more like an advertisement than a review I’m finding as I finish writing this. But you know what? I’m okay with that! This is a great little book and good resource that helps start a conversation and facilitate inclusivity and growth.
Recommended Reader: EVERYONE!!!
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