JK Rowling returns award amid trans row criticism


Kerry Kennedy and JK Rowling

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Kerry Kennedy presented JK Rowling with the award in December of last year

JK Rowling has said she is giving back an award associated with the US Kennedy family, after being criticised for her views on gender and trans issues.

The author was given the Ripple of Hope honour by the Robert F Kennedy Human Rights organisation last year.

But earlier this month, its president Kerry Kennedy said views expressed by Rowling recently “diminished the identity” of trans people.

Rowling says Kennedy’s implication that she is transphobic is “incorrect”.

What is the row all about?

The Harry Potter writer sparked controversy in June for posting tweets which took issue with the phrase “people who menstruate”.

Rowling objected to the avoidance of the use of the word “women”.

Ina lengthy blog post, Rowling said her interest in trans issues stemmed from being a survivor of abuse and having concerns around single-sex spaces.

“I respect every trans person’s right to live any way that feels authentic and comfortable to them,” she wrote. “At the same time, my life has been shaped by being female. I do not believe it’s hateful to say so.”

Several film stars from the Harry Potter universe distanced themselves from her comments, including Eddie Redmayne, Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson.

What did Kerry Kennedy say?

Earlier this month, Kennedyposted a statementonline, which read: “I have spoken with JK Rowling to express my profound disappointment that she has chosen to use her remarkable gifts to create a narrative that diminishes the identity of trans and non-binary people, undermining the validity and integrity of the entire transgender community.

“One that disproportionately suffers from violence, discrimination, harassment, and exclusion and, as a result, experiences high rates of suicide, suicide attempts, homelessness, and mental and bodily harm.

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JK Rowling wrote the Cormoran Strike book series under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith

“Black trans women and trans youth in particular are targeted.”

She went on to say the organisation rejecte

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