Update, May 4 at 4:08 p.m. ET: Junot Díaz has responded in a statement to The New York Times: “I take responsibility for my past. That is the reason I made the decision to tell the truth of my rape and its damaging aftermath. This conversation is important and must continue. I am listening to and learning from women’s stories in this essential and overdue cultural movement. We must continue to teach all men about consent and boundaries.”
Weeks after Junot Díaz penned an essay for The New Yorker publicly revealing he was raped as a child, women are using social media to speak out about the author’s own alleged problematic behavior. In the months since The New York Times’ exposé about the ways Harvey Weinstein sexually abused and harassed actresses and female employees, a flood of allegations have shaken up Hollywood and various industries, giving birth to the Time’s Up movement, which seeks to put an end to the pervasive behaviors that have led to the sexual abuse and harassment of many. On May 4, author Zinzi Clemmons tweeted about Díaz.
“As a grad student, I invited Junot Díaz to a workshop on issues of representation in literature,” she wrote. “I was an unknown wide-eyed 26 yo, and he used it as an opportunity to corner and forcibly kiss me. I’m far from the only he’s done this 2, I refuse to be silent anymore.”
This led others to tweet about their own troublesome encounters with Díaz, including Carmen Maria Machado, author of Her Body and Other Parties.
To some, the news came as a shock. But others familiar with his work bring up the misogyny that made its way into his books. Still, others speculate that The New Yorker essay served as a calculated attempt to get ahead of these allegations. As his name trends on Twitter, people continue to weigh in about the accusations. Check out a few below:
Editor’s Note: Remezcla has reached out to Díaz’s publisher, Riverhead Books, for comment. We’ll update the piece if more information becomes available.