Chanel Miller

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Chanel Miller
Miller at the University of Amsterdam, 2020
Miller at the University of Amsterdam, 2020
Born (1992-06-12) June 12, 1992 (age 28)
Palo Alto, California,
United States
OccupationWriter and artist
Alma materUniversity of California, Santa Barbara
SubjectAutobiographical memoir
Notable awardsGlamour Woman of the Year (2016, 2019)

Chanel Miller (born June 12, 1992) is an American writer and artist based in San Francisco, California and New York City.[1] She was known anonymously after she was sexually assaulted on the campus of Stanford University in 2015 by Brock Allen Turner. The following year, her victim impact statement at his sentencing hearing went viral after it was published online by BuzzFeed, being read 11 million times within four days.[2] Miller was referred to as "Emily Doe" in court documents and media reports until September 2019, when she relinquished her anonymity and released her memoir Know My Name. The book won the 2019 National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiographies and was named in several national book lists of the year. 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. She is also a public speaker.[3]

Early life[edit]

Chanel Miller was born in 1992[4][5] in Palo Alto, California,[6] the elder of two daughters of a Chinese mother and an American father. Her mother emigrated from China to become a writer and her father is a retired therapist.[7][8][9] Miller graduated from Gunn High School in 2010.[10][11] She attended the University of California, Santa Barbara's College of Creative Studies from which she graduated with a degree in literature in 2014.[5][12]

Assault and victim impact statement in 2015[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.[13] Miller was unconscious, with alcohol in her system.[14] When Turner tried to flee, he was caught and held down on the ground by the two graduate students as they waited for police to arrive.[15] Turner was arrested and indicted on five felony sexual assault charges, to which he pleaded not guilty.[16] In 2016, he was convicted of three of these charges and was sentenced to six months' imprisonment, sparking public outrage due to the sentence's leniency.[17] Sentencing judge Aaron Persky was recalled two years later.[18]

The 7,137-word-long victim impact statement by Miller—who was referred to in court documents and media reports as "Emily Doe"—was published by Buzzfeed on June 3, 2016, the day after Turner was sentenced,[14] and was reprinted in other major news outlets such as The New York Times.[19] The victim impact statement was read 11 million times in four days after it was published, going viral.[2]

Know My Name: A Memoir[edit]

On August 9, 2019, 60 Minutes released an interview with Miller—who decided to go public with her name. She described her story and the consequences of being anonymous, and met the two students who stopped Turner.[20] Miller's memoir entitled Know My Name: A Memoir was published on September 4, 2019 by Viking Books and became a best-seller.[21][22][23][24] The book won the 2019 National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiographies[25] and was named one of the top ten books of the year by The Washington Post.[26] The New York Times also selected Know My Name for its "100 Notable Books of 2019." [27] The Dayton Literary Peace Prize selected the book as its 2020 non-fiction winner.[28]


After her assault, Miller started taking art courses at the recommendation by her therapist.[29] In the summer of 2015, Miller attended a printmaking class at Rhode Island School of Design in Providence, Rhode Island.[29]

In 2020, a mural drawn by Miller appeared in the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco.[29] The 70 ft (21 m)-long and 13 ft (4.0 m)-tall mural shows three vignettes of a cartoon figure, and the phrases "I was", "I am", and "I will be".[30] The museum was closed to the public due to COVID-19, though the mural is visible through the windows facing Hyde Street.[30]

Recognition and legacy[edit]

Miller's assault story and the legal case "sparked a nationwide discussion about rape on college campuses and how survivors were not being heard",[31][32] and "became part of the intense debates around rape, sexism and sexual misconduct over the past years," including the Me Too movement.[33]

On November 1, 2016, Glamour named Miller, then known only as Emily Doe, 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.[34] Miller attended the award ceremony anonymously.[35] She accepted the award on stage in November 2019 after the publication of her book. She delivered a poem at the ceremony in which she advocated for the well-being of sexual assault survivors.[36] She was listed as an influential person in Time's 2019 100 Next list.[37]



  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. ^ "Chanel Miller". Executive Speakers Bureau.
  4. ^ Miller, Chanel (2019). Know My Name. p. 10.
  5. ^ 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.
  6. ^ Kadvany, Elena (September 23, 2019). "'Rape is not a punishment for getting drunk.' Chanel Miller speaks out during her first interview about being sexually assaulted by Brock Turner". Palo Alto Online. Retrieved November 8, 2019.
  7. ^ Sobieraj Westfall, Sandra; Hanlon, Greg (September 23, 2019). "Why Brock Turner's Sex Assault Victim Decided to Come Forward". People. Retrieved October 3, 2019.
  8. ^ Weiner, Jennifer (September 24, 2019). "'Know My Name,' a Sexual Assault Survivor Tells the World". The New York Times. 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. ^ Nguyen, Madison; Yang, Joshua (October 4, 2019). "Alumna releases memoir after sexual assault case". The Oracle. Gunn High School. Retrieved February 27, 2021.
  11. ^ Kadvany, Elena (September 4, 2019). "Anonymous no longer, Emily Doe reclaims identity in new memoir about Brock Turner sexual assault and its aftermath". Palo Alto Weekly. Retrieved February 27, 2021.
  12. ^ "CCS Attendee Chanel Miller Announces Forthcoming Memoir, Know My Name". UC Santa Barbara College of Creative Studies. September 11, 2019. Retrieved October 3, 2019.
  13. ^ 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.
  14. ^ 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.
  15. ^ Herhold, Scott (March 21, 2016). "Herhold: Thanking two Stanford students who subdued campus sex assault suspect". The Mercury News. San Jose, California: MediaNews Group.
  16. ^ Kaplan, Tracey (February 2, 2015). "Former Stanford swimmer pleads not guilty to rape charges". The Mercury News. San Jose, California: MediaNews Group.
  17. ^ Stack, Liam (June 6, 2016). "Light Sentence for Brock Turner in Stanford Rape Case Draws Outrage". The New York Times. New York City.
  18. ^ 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.
  19. ^ "Court Statement of Stanford Rape Victim". The New York Times. New York City. June 8, 2016. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  20. ^ Whitaker, Bill. "'Know My Name': Author and sexual assault survivor Chanel Miller's full "60 Minutes" interview". Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  21. ^ 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.
  22. ^ 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.
  23. ^ "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.
  24. ^ "Best-Selling Books Week Ended September 28". The Wall Street Journal. New York City: Dow Jones & Company. October 3, 2019. Retrieved October 28, 2019.
  25. ^ Beth Parker (March 12, 2020). "Announcing the 2019 Award Winners". Retrieved March 13, 2020.
  26. ^ "Best Books of 2019". The Washington Post. November 21, 2019. Retrieved November 26, 2019.
  27. ^ "100 Notable Books of 2019". The New York Times. Retrieved November 29, 2019.
  28. ^ "2020 Awards – Dayton Literary Peace Prize". Dayton Literary Peace Prize. Retrieved January 6, 2021.
  29. ^ a b c Finkel, Jori (August 5, 2020). "Chanel Miller's Secret Source of Strength". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  30. ^ a b Plummer, Todd (August 17, 2020). "Chanel Miller on her art debut: I never thought I'd have so much space to be seen". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 20, 2020.
  31. ^ Cleary, Tom. "Chanel Miller: Stanford Rape Survivor Wants You to Know Her Name". Heavy. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  32. ^ "Chanel Miller Says 'Know My Name,' As She Reflects On Her Assault By Brock Turner". Retrieved September 23, 2019.
  33. ^ de León, Concepción (September 4, 2019). "You Know Emily Doe's Story. Now Learn Her Name". The New York Times. Retrieved September 6, 2019.
  34. ^ "Glamour Women of the Year: Stanford Sexual Assault Case Survivor Emily Doe Speaks Out". Glamour Magazine. Retrieved November 3, 2016.
  35. ^ 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.
  36. ^ "The Best Moments From Glamour's 2019 Women of the Year Awards". November 11, 2019.
  37. ^ "Chanel Miller on Time magazine's 100 next list". Retrieved November 29, 2019.

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