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Publisher's Summary

Pocket Change Collective was born out of a need for space. Space to think. Space to connect. Space to be yourself. And this is your invitation to join us.

"Thank God we have Alok. And I'm learning a thing or two myself." (Billy Porter, Emmy award-winning actor, singer, and Broadway theater performer)

"When reading this book, all I feel is kindness." (Sam Smith, Grammy and Oscar award-winning singer and songwriter)

"Beyond the Gender Binary will give readers everywhere the feeling that anything is possible within themselves" (Princess Nokia, musician and co-founder of the Smart Girl Club)

"A fierce, penetrating, and empowering call for change." (Kirkus Reviews starred review)

"An affirming, thoughtful read for all ages." (School Library Journal starred review)

In Beyond the Gender Binary, poet, artist, and LGBTQIA+ rights advocate Alok Vaid-Menon deconstructs, demystifies, and reimagines the gender binary.

Pocket Change Collective is a series of small books with big ideas from today's leading activists and artists. In this installment, Beyond the Gender Binary, Alok Vaid-Menon challenges the world to see gender not in black and white, but in full color. Taking from their own experiences as a gender-nonconforming artist, they show us that gender is a malleable and creative form of expression. The only limit is your imagination.

©2020 Alok Vaid-Menon (P)2020 Listening Library

Critic Reviews

"There's no better time for a new conversation about the damaging effects of mainstream society's oppressive, dismissive, and silencing stance on who folks are supposed to be based on...what...? Thank God we have Alok. And I'm learning a thing or two myself." (Billy Porter, Emmy award-winning actor, singer, and Broadway theater performer)

"This beautiful book is a beacon, just like Alok. Having Alok in my life has saved me in so many ways, and now you can have a little bit of them with you, too. When reading this book, all I feel is kindness. This is a step-by-step education on what it means to respect non-binary people. Alok is a human being who has a deep love and commitment to other human beings. They have come to us from the future to show us what life could be like if we all loved a little harder and dug a little deeper." (Sam Smith, Grammy and Oscar award-winning singer and songwriter)  

"Beyond the Gender Binary is a literary vessel of light for those who are looking for hopefulness, honesty, and a stimulating education in the exploration of themselves. This book is a twenty-first-century survival guide for queer-identifying people of all walks of life - Alok provides a safe space of shared experiences, commitment, and love to expand the gender binary to create a brighter and more inclusive present and future. This book shares wisdom, knowledge, and the universal spirit of celebrating one's self by shattering the transphobic lens that hinders most gender non-conforming people. Beyond the Gender Binary will give readers everywhere the feeling that anything is possible within themselves, and that self-love through whatever choice of gender expression is truly attainable." (Princess Nokia, musician and co-founder of the Smart Girl Club)

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What listeners say about Beyond the Gender Binary

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Logical fallacy throughout and very poorly argued.

I came in as open minded as I possibly could into the book, looking to learn and understand, but from the very beginning when Alok described “men and women” as “opposite” I was put on guard. Men and women are biologically complimentary, two essential contributors to creating a human life. Alok accuses society as the oppressor and divisor, when they themselves have divided the world in their head without regard for if it is true or not. The book is filled with inconsistencies and poor logic, and I don’t care to write all of them out (the review will end up being longer than the actual book), but If this is the best non-binary ideology (and it is one) can offer, it will not convince many people.

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A must-read for everyone on this planet

This book will rock your world view on gender, binary thinking and human society as a whole.

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A Must Read or Listen.

This is must read or listen for everyone. I finished it in two days. This opened my eyes to what needs to be considered, especially in public relations. It is also refreshing because Non-Binary people are just as adequate and valid as binary people. We must respect their pronouns and become their allies for liberation for all.

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  • JR
  • 07-29-20

AMAZING

This book changed the way I see the world and how much the gender binary dictates the way we live our lives. I will be sharing this with all of my friends and look forward to advocating more for gender neutral rights, language, and law!! ❤️

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Beautiful story read by a beautiful soul

A must listen. Both affirming and eye opening. A wonderful perspective. They shared their experience in such an articulate expansive, and inclusive manner it’s hard to not relate.

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Thank you

So informative. Thank you for being transparent and sharing your experiences. I loved listening to this!

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Beautiful 💖 please give it a go.

This is a book I wish everyone made the time to listen to. Alok’s passion, drive and history are the reason for my inspiration. They’re a warrior at their core and the greatest teacher that’s here to show us ignorant people, how to stand up for our Non-binary family.

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A must read book in order to achieve a more inclusive world to live in

Loved the fact that the writer was also the narrator! Appreciated every bit of personal anecdote that was given as they tried to stress how important it is that we think beyond the gender binary! I know I have much more to unlearn and learn in order to be more inclusive and truly accept people as they are and this book was such an excellent start to begin my journey! Read it, listen to it, please! 💖🙌🏽

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Necessary listen for EVERYONE

This is such an important read/listen. As a non-binary person myself I hope for a future that isn’t so scared of people like me.

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If there were more than 5 stars, I'd use them all!

This is an amazing book, it should be included in school programs, it should be read by every person. Alok V. Menon has the power of clarity, delicateness and compassion with every word coming out of him. That's amazing.

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  • Luca
  • 11-10-21

Amazing, groundbreaking work

This book is way beyond it's time, but hopefully, it can be speed up the change in our world. The author is an incredible thinker, someone who is brave and thinks outside of societal norms.
The elegance in the way they articulated their points gives me hope that maybe gender non-conforming people like myself will one day convince the world of our value and that our existence will be respected.
I can't recommend this enough to anyone willing to open their mind and take a look outside of the artificial boxes society has created for us.

Thank you so much to the author for writing this work. It was very much needed.

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  • Faysarah
  • 11-08-21

Should be mandatory reading

This book needs to be in the hands of young people all over the world, regardless of their gender identity. This book breaks down bullying and the core of pain that causes it in a way I have never seen written before. This book gives me hope for humanity healing.

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  • book devourer
  • 11-07-21

Insightful

Very timely and insightful.
A must read for all generations. Thank you. Loving Humanity.

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  • Janet
  • 09-19-21

Loved this so much! A must read!

Alok is an amazing writer and thinker. Their thoughts are inspiring and eye opening. I’ve been following Alok for a while on Instagram and I’m really happy they have a book now.

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  • eca
  • 08-19-21

Fantastic

I have loved Alok since finding them on Instagram a while ago. Their writing is powerful and heart felt. I have learnt so much from them. I will be buying a physical copy for myself and a few others for friends and family, to support such an inspirational person. Thank you for all your work Alok!

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  • Dave
  • 08-03-21

So glad I found Alok

I discovered Alok on Jonathan Van Ness’s podcast and found their eloquence and message inspiring. Alok self-narrates this audiobook and embodies their message. The book is informative, it is personal, it is vulnerable. During the audiobook I recognised my own prejudices and challenged them. Thank you for your insights Alok.

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  • lainey
  • 01-02-21

Brilliant. Highly recommend.

Brilliant. Beautiful. Inspiring. Insightful. And informative. Listened in one go. Makes so much sense. Highly recommend.

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  • katherine maclennan
  • 06-24-20

Glorious

Everyone should read this book. Beautifully articulate and makes a topic, that so many shy away from, very clear and inclusive. Thank you for writing this.

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  • Kitty Hawkins
  • 09-10-20

Insightful

A short, but nonetheless important discussion about how the confines of the gender binary hurt and hinder us all. Ideal for anyone wanting to support a trans or non-binary friend or family member.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 11-28-21

Alok's words hold so much wisdom

A really easy listen, concise and informative, as well as validating for those who are yet to find out who they are as a person.

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  • kisbest
  • 06-30-20

they're amazing

i loved this book, especially with Alok reading it. highly recommended, especially for people who want to know more about non binary life.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-23-20

Wow!!!!

I came out almost a decade ago and always thought of my femininity as a discrepancy to be phased out on my journey to becoming a palatable cis gay guy. This book completely turns everything I knew about myself on its head. I had to pause every so often to process what Alok was saying and compare it to my own experiences. A very powerful and extremely thought-provoking read.