Chanel Miller

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Chanel Miller
BornJune 1992 (age 27)
Palo Alto, California,
United States
Alma materUniversity of California,
Santa Barbara
Notable awardsGlamour Woman of the Year (2016, 2019)

Chanel Miller (Chinese name Zhang Xiao Xia; Chinese: 张小夏; born June 1992) is an American writer based in San Francisco, California.[1] She first came into the public eye anonymously after she was sexually assaulted on the campus of Stanford University in 2015. The victim impact statement she wrote and read at her assailant's sentencing hearing the following year went viral after being published online by Buzzfeed, and was read 11 million times in four days.[2] Miller was referred to as Emily Doe in court documents and in media reports until September 2019, when she relinquished her anonymity and published the best-selling memoir Know My Name. She is credited with sparking national discussion in the United States about the treatment of sexual assault cases and victims by college campuses and court systems.

Early life[edit]

Chanel Miller was born in June 1992[3][4] in Palo Alto, California.[5] Her mother emigrated from China to become a writer and her father is a retired therapist.[6][7] Her Chinese name is Zhang Xiao Xia (Chinese: 张小夏; transl. little summer).[8] She has a younger sister.[9] She attended the University of California, Santa Barbara at the College of Creative Studies where she graduated with a degree in literature in 2014.[4][10]

2015 assault and Know My Name[edit]

On the evening of January 17, 2015, Miller accompanied her sister to a Kappa Alpha fraternity party at Stanford University; later that night, two Stanford graduate students found Miller lying on the ground behind a dumpster with another Stanford student, 19-year-old Brock Turner, on top of her.[11] Miller was unconscious, with alcohol in her system.[12] When he tried to flee, Turner was caught and held down on the ground by the other two men as they waited for police to arrive.[13] Turner was arrested and indicted on five sexual assault charges, to which he pleaded not guilty.[14] In 2016, he was convicted of three of these charges and was sentenced to six months' imprisonment—a sentence which sparked public outrage due to its leniency.[15] Sentencing judge Aaron Persky was recalled two years later.[16]

The 7,137-word-long victim impact statement by Miller, who was referred to in court documents and media reports as "Emily Doe" for the sake of her anonymity, was published by Buzzfeed on June 3, 2016, the day after Turner was sentenced,[12] and was reprinted in other major news outlets such as The New York Times.[17] The victim impact statement was read 11 million times in four days after it was published, going viral.[2]

In September 2019, Miller relinquished her anonymity, being interviewed on 60 Minutes and publishing a memoir entitled Know My Name. The book, published by Viking Books,[18] became a best-seller,[19][20][21] was named one of the top ten books of 2019 by the Washington Post[22] and was nominated for Best Memoir & Autobiography at the 2019 Goodreads Choice Awards.[23] The New York Times also selected Know My Name for its "100 Notable Books of 2019." [24]


Miller's story and the legal case "sparked a nationwide discussion about rape on college campuses and how survivors were not being heard"[25][26] and "became part of the intense debates around rape, sexism and sexual misconduct over the past years," including the Me Too movement.[27]

On November 1, 2016, Glamour named Miller a woman of the year for "changing the conversation about sexual assault forever", citing that her impact statement had been read over 11 million times.[28] Miller attended the award ceremony anonymously.[29] In November 2019, after the publication of her book, Miller attended Glamour's award ceremony again, where she was again recognized as a Woman of the Year. She delivered a poem on stage, in which she advocated for the well-being of sexual assault survivors.[29] She was listed as an influential person in Time's 2019 100 Next list.[30]



  1. ^ "Chanel Miller". Penguin Random House. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Stanford sexual assault: Chanel Miller reveals her identity". BBC. September 4, 2019. Retrieved February 11, 2020.
  3. ^ Miller, Chanel (2019). Know My Name. p. 10.
  4. ^ a b Whitaker, Bill (September 22, 2019). ""Know My Name": Author and sexual assault survivor Chanel Miller's full "60 Minutes" interview". 60 Minutes. Retrieved October 2, 2019.
  5. ^ Kadvany, Elena. "'Rape is not a punishment for getting drunk.' Chanel Miller speaks out during her first interview about being sexually assaulted by Brock Turner". Retrieved November 8, 2019.
  6. ^ Sobieraj Westfall, Sandra; Hanlon, Greg (September 23, 2019). "Why Brock Turner's Sex Assault Victim Decided to Come Forward". People. Retrieved October 3, 2019.
  7. ^ Weiner, Jennifer (September 24, 2019). "'Know My Name,' a Sexual Assault Survivor Tells the World". The New York Times. Retrieved October 2, 2019.
  8. ^ Ko, Lisa (September 24, 2019). "Why It Matters That 'Emily Doe' in the Brock Turner Case Is Asian-American". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved October 2, 2019.
  9. ^ Silman, Anna (September 23, 2019). "Chanel Miller's Story Needed to Be Told in Her Own Words". The Cut. Retrieved October 2, 2019.
  10. ^ "CCS Attendee Chanel Miller Announces Forthcoming Memoir, Know My Name". UC Santa Barbara College of Creative Studies. September 11, 2019. Retrieved October 3, 2019.
  11. ^ Xu, Victor (June 2, 2016). "Brock Turner sentenced to six months in county jail, three years probation". The Stanford Daily. Stanford, California: The Stanford Daily Publishing Corporation.
  12. ^ a b Baker, Katie J.M. (June 3, 2016). "Here's The Powerful Letter The Stanford Victim Read To Her Attacker". Buzzfeed. New York City: Buzzfeed Media Group. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  13. ^ Herhold, Scott (March 21, 2016). "Herhold: Thanking two Stanford students who subdued campus sex assault suspect". The Mercury News. San Jose, California: MediaNews Group.
  14. ^ Kaplan, Tracey (February 2, 2015). "Former Stanford swimmer pleads not guilty to rape charges". The Mercury News. San Jose, California: MediaNews Group.
  15. ^ Stack, Liam (June 6, 2016). "Light Sentence for Brock Turner in Stanford Rape Case Draws Outrage". The New York Times. New York City: New York Times Company.
  16. ^ Egelko, Bob (June 6, 2018). "Judge Aaron Persky, who ruled in sex assault case, recalled in Santa Clara County". San Francisco Chronicle. San Francisco, California.
  17. ^ "Court Statement of Stanford Rape Victim". The New York Times. New York City: New York Times Company. June 8, 2016. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  18. ^ de León, Concepción (September 22, 2019). "'It Will Always Be a Part of My Life': Chanel Miller Is Ready to Talk". The New York Times. New York City: New York Times Company.
  19. ^ Wyatt, Neal (October 3, 2019), "New Bestsellers, Oct. 3, 2019 - Book Pulse", Library Journal, New York City: Media Source Inc., retrieved October 28, 2019, Know My Name: A Memoir by Chanel Miller (Viking: Penguin) reclaims her story at No. 5 on the NYT Hardcover Nonfiction Best Sellers list and No. 14 on the USA Today Best-Selling Books list.
  20. ^ "Hardcover Nonfiction Books - Best Sellers - Oct 13. 2019", The New York Times, October 13, 2019, retrieved October 28, 2019, New This Week - Know My Name - by Chanel Miller - Viking - A sexual assault victim reclaims her identity and challenges our culture and criminal justice system as they relate to this issue.
  21. ^ "Best-Selling Books Week Ended September 28". The Wall Street Journal. New York City: Dow Jones & Company. October 3, 2019. Retrieved October 28, 2019.
  22. ^ "Best Books of 2019". The Washington Post. November 21, 2019. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  23. ^ "Best Memoir & Autobiography". Goodreads. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  24. ^ "100 Notable Books of 2019". The New York Times. The New York Times. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  25. ^ Cleary, Tom. "Chanel Miller: Stanford Rape Survivor Wants You to Know Her Name". Heavy. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  26. ^ "Chanel Miller Says 'Know My Name,' As She Reflects On Her Assault By Brock Turner". Retrieved September 23, 2019.
  27. ^ de León, Concepción (September 4, 2019). "You Know Emily Doe's Story. Now Learn Her Name". The New York Times. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  28. ^ "Glamour Women of the Year: Stanford Sexual Assault Case Survivor Emily Doe Speaks Out". Glamour Magazine. Retrieved November 3, 2016.
  29. ^ a b Shammas, Brittany (November 12, 2019). "Once an unnamed sexual assault victim, Chanel Miller accepts Woman of the Year award — this time, herself". The Washington Post.
  30. ^ "Chanel Miller on Time magazine's 100 next list". Retrieved November 29, 2019.

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