JK Rowling’s new book sparks fresh transgender rights row


By Lianne Kolirin | CNN

JK Rowling has once again come under fire from transgender rights activists, this time for her new crime novel, which features a cross-dressing serial killer.

Published Tuesday, “Troubled Blood” by Robert Galbraith — Rowling’s crime writer pseudonym — is the fifth installment in the Cormoran Strike series.

An review of the novel in Britain’s Daily Telegraph on Sunday described the “meat of the book” as an investigation into the cold case of a missing doctor who is believed to have fallen victim to a murderous cross-dresser.

“One wonders what critics of Rowling’s stance on trans issues will make of a book whose moral seems to be: never trust a man in a dress,” reviewer Jake Kerridge wrote.

Mermaids, a UK-based charity which supports transgender children and their families, said it was”concerned” by reports that the book features a character presenting as another gender in order to carry out attacks.

“This is a long-standing and somewhat tired trope, responsible for the demonization of a small group of people, simply hoping to live their lives with dignity,” a spokesperson said in a statement to CNN.

The spokesperson cited an example from Rowling’s second book in the “Strike” series from 2014 — “The Silkworm,” which featured a transgender character as a suspect.

“We are disappointed to hear that the author might be propagating the same, long-standing and hurtful presentation of trans women as a threat.

“As a children’s charity, we are bearing witness to the very real hurt felt by young people who once saw Ms. Rowling’s fiction as a place of comfort, friendship and escape. The author recently expressed support for trans people’s right to live free from persecution. Her latest book might cause those still enjoying her books to question that sentiment,” the Mermaids statement added.

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Rowling’s management told CNN that it would not be commenting on the latest controversy.

Paris Lees, a transgender rights activist and British Vogue columnist, tweeted Monday: “JK Rowling’s new book’s about a ‘transvestite serial killer’ Meanwhile over in the real world the number of trans people killed in Brazil has risen by 70% this past year, young trans women are left to burn in cars and men who kill us (for being trans) are pardoned and sent home.”

Likening Rowling to her own creation of the much-disliked “Harry Potter” character Dolores Umbridge, trans actress and writer Jen Richards said on

Source:: East Bay – Entertainment


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