Beacon Press

Beacon Press is an independent publisher of serious non-fiction and fiction. Our books often change the way readers think about fundamental issues; they promote such values as freedom of speech and thought; diversity, religious pluralism, and anti-racism; and respect for diversity in all areas of life. Visit our website at
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Appalled at the conditions of Massachusetts’ mental institutions Dix published “Memorial to the Legislature of Massachusetts” in 1843, listing the horrors of every asylum in the state. She went on to be one of the first to advocate for improved asylum conditions. To read about other advocates and a history of disability from pre-1492 to the present, check out Kim Nielsen’s A Disability History of the United States.




D.C. Launches First Ever Transgender Respect Ad Campaign

This campaign has a lot of awesome stuff going for it.

1) Transgender PoC make up about half the face of the campaign.

2) There is a genderqueer person (!!) and their caption respectfully uses “person” instead of man or woman.

3) Plus-sized trans* people for the win!

4) Finally a campaign explicitly for trans* people that emphasizes our deserving respect and courtesy.

5) The transgender women and men are included in “any woman/man” which is huge because it emphasizes that trans* women and men are women and men too; it leaves no room for argument and doesn’t turn it into a debate about genitals.

6) Emphasis on our being a part of the communities we live in. We aren’t any different than anyone else.

I really love the DC Transgender Respect campaign and I wish more states and cities would launch stuff like this!

- Jax

Real proud of my hometown today.


Learn more here. A very cool idea! 


Learn more here. A very cool idea! 

Ginny Gilder, a former Olympian, shares the crushing disappointment that occurs when political disputes interfere with Olympic aspirations. Check out our blog to find out more!

ReVisioning Black History Month: Linking African American and Latino Histories - Beacon Broadside

 The first martyr of the American Revolution wasCrispus Attucks, a sailor of African and Native American heritage who fell in the Boston Massacre. John Hancock honored Attuck’s memory by observing, “Who taught the British soldier that he might be defeated? Who dared look into his eyes? I place, therefore, this Crispus Attucks in the foremost rank of the men that dared.”

The idea of the brain as an organ divided into parts with different motor and sensory functions was popularized by phrenologist Franz Joseph Gall in the 18th century. Although the phrenological idea of reading personality on the bumps of your head was wrong (and totally weird), Gall’s fundamental idea of various brain functions being located in specific areas of the brain ultimately proved correct. Way to go FJ!

To learn more about the birth of modern medicine take a look at  Marketplace of the Marvelous by Erika Janik.

Anderson Cooper points out why the new Arizona law would be so extreme should Jan Brewer refuse to veto it.