“Locating the problems of social injustice in the world, rather than in our bodies, has been key to naming oppression. It has been powerful for marginalized peoples to say, ‘Leave our bodies alone. Stop justifying and explaining your oppressive crap by measuring, comparing, judging, blaming, creating theories about our bodies.’ But at the same time, we must not forget that our bodies are still part of the equation, that paired with the external forces of oppression are the incredibly internal, body-centered experiences of who we are and how we live with oppression.”
- Eli Clare
I always love what Eli Clare has to say.
this isn’t about political correctness, this isn’t about a fear of the word “curvy.” it is about how a lot of people are disappointed that (some) fashion blogs are reproducing the exact same norms (thin, white, tall, rich) fashion magazines have been for decades. we are disappointed about which bodies are shown, which bodies aren’t, what is said, and namely what isn’t. the reaction to this post, from what i have seen, has largely been about disappointment rather than anger. disappointed that, yet again, we are being told by a rich white man how we should dress and how to define our own bodies.
i stopped reading fashion magazines because i was sick of people dictating how i should look, what being interested in fashion should entail (a mutual interest in makeup, diet culture, and how to get a man), that sort of shit. i came to the internet pleasantly surprised to find lots of other young people pissed off about the same thing, sharing their love of fashion, without judgement, with passion, with appreciation and celebration rather than body policing and hating. sadly, in the six or seven years i’ve been participating in online fashion communities, i have seen it change dramatically. that radical potential often looks like its fizzling out…”
“body harmony” or body policing? the sartorialist gets it wrong | À l’allure garçonnière
quick rant about the sartorialist up on the BLAHG
“In summation, the cardinal rule for avoiding the moments that make us body-policing assholes is: Don’t comment on other people’s bodies or eating habits, not to them, not to people they know, not to strangers who may be nearby. If it would bother you to hear it said about yourself, don’t say it to someone else.”
- Lesley Kinzel
for a good two weeks now i’ve been thinking about a comment my boss made about how “tu aimes manger… tu manges tout le temps.” i know for a fact he didn’t mean anything by it, but it still felt like judgement. and now i am self-conscious about snacking my desk… and i know i shouldn’t! and i know he wouldn’t want me to!
and then, last week, a coworker of mine at my other job asked if i thought a person we hadn’t seen since december had lost weight. i honestly hadn’t noticed (and even if i had it didn’t seem like a topic of conversation or a “thing” to bring up) and said that, and then when she saw him she asked him, “have you lost weight?” and he said “i don’t know, maybe?” and she said, “well i meant that as a good thing!” really smiley and all positive and nice. it made me cringe so hard.
i know so many people (i can think of six off the top of my head) who have lost weight when sick, depressed, or were struggling with an eating disorder, and people in all sorts of contexts and circumstances think it’s not only OKAY to comment on the change in their appearance, but not in a caring way: rather, in that fucked up, super socially acceptable way of “losing weight = good! losing weight = you are healthy/ier!” and then we still swallow the bullshit of “i want to lose weight for myself" without taking into consideration how much fat shaming we put up with on a daily basis.
then, again this sunday, i felt uncomfortable when people were talking about celebrities and how Iconic Hollywood Actress X is just way too skinny, etc. etc. and everyone was joining in and saying what they thought! “well i think she’s beautiful.” i’ve always disliked those conversations but never know how to disengage from them…
i love this advice. it sounds really simple, but it’s harder than we think. we are so trained to comment on people’s bodies that we often don’t even realize it.
OH MY GOD, Y’ALL, THE DOCUMENTARY IS FINALLY UP! This has been one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I hope you all enjoy watching it as much as I enjoyed making it.
Special thanks: to my lovely stars, Jessica and Keena—I love you both for life; to Hannah and Ivana, the best co-producers a girl could ask for; to Re/Dress NYC and Taueret for being fucking kick-ass; to Substantia Jones and The Adipositivity Project for being one of the most inspiring examples of fat-visibility-as-activism; and to my entire documentary film-making class and all the friends who helped along the way. I LOVE YOU ALL. <3
If you have any questions or comments, please email me.
HEARTS TO ALL INVOLVED!
shameless self-promotion: just wrote a quick post about this great documentary up at my blog.
“… when you use “I’m feeling fat” to convey that you’re feeling unattractive—or unfit, or depressed, or slovenly, or unlovable, or generally not your authentic self in some way or other—you’re implicitly saying a rather lot of nasty things about fat women. Which is unattractive in a way having nothing to do with what one looks like on her outside.”
(via gabifresh) (via bigsuit) (via definatalie)
thank you! also, when you say, “You look thin” or “Have you lost weight?” as a way to convey that someone is looking attractive or as a compliment you’re implicitly saying that you’re an asshole.
this photo is beautiful and all sorts of gibson girl turn of the century referencing, but of course i fucking hate the tagline. “the return of voluptuous.” so now instead of “voluptuous” (whatever that means) women being shamed, we’ll shame skinny women. or tall women. or some other kind of woman. we always have to be selling some kind of ideal and it drives me nuts.
body types are not trends. you don’t sprout double d breasts because a magazine tells you to. your waist, your hips, your bust, your height are not adjustable depending on what this industry dictates to you.