What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About Fat

What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About Fat

From the creator of Your Fat Friend, an explosive indictment of the systemic and cultural bias facing plus-size people that will move us toward creating an agenda for fat justice.

Anti-fatness is everywhere. In What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About Fat, Aubrey Gordon unearths the cultural attitudes and social systems that have led to people being denied basic needs because they are fat and calls for social justice movements to be inclusive of plus-sized people's experiences. Unlike the recent wave of memoirs and quasi self-help books that encourage readers to love and accept themselves, Gordon pushes the discussion further towards authentic fat activism, which includes ending legal weight discrimination, giving equal access to health care for large people, increased access to public spaces, and ending anti-fat violence. As she argues, I did not come to body positivity for self-esteem. I came to it for social justice.

By sharing her experiences as well as those of others--from smaller fat to very fat people--she concludes that to be fat in our society is to be seen as an undeniable failure, unlovable, unforgivable, and morally condemnable. Fatness is an open invitation for others to express disgust, fear, and insidious concern. To be fat is to be denied humanity and empathy. Studies show that fat survivors of sexual assault are less likely to be believed and less likely than their thin counterparts to report various crimes; 27% of very fat women and 13% of very fat men attempt suicide; over 50% of doctors describe their fat patients as awkward, unattractive, ugly and noncompliant; and in 48 states, it's legal--even routine--to deny employment because of an applicant's size.

Advancing fat justice and changing prejudicial structures and attitudes will require work from all people. What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About Fat is a crucial tool to create a tectonic shift in the way we see, talk about, and treat our bodies, fat and thin alike.

Title:What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About Fat
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780807041307
Format Type:

    What We Don't Talk About When We Talk About Fat Reviews

  • Roxane

    Few writers approach the realities of living in a fat body, the pernicious nature of fatphobia, and what it would take for our culture to radically re-imagine our relationships to our bodies than Aubr...

  • Cari

    I follow Aubrey Gordon / Your Fat Friend on Twitter, and I have always been grateful for the insights posted there. So when I saw this ARC available on Edelweiss, I immediately downloaded it. I found ...

  • Kelly

    A well researched overview of what it means to be fat in the U.S. Accentuated with personal anecdotes that illustrate the discrimination that fat people face while offering hope and a very reasonable ...

  • Mehrsa

    This is a necessary perspective and I totally agree with the author that as a society, we "discriminate" against fat people and we equate fat with unhealthy and skinny with healthy. There were parts o...

  • El

    I would urge everyone to read this book and if you don't do so yourself at least press it into the hands of your closest friend-or-family-member-who-is-also-a-healthcare-professional. It's a great (an...

  • Paige

    You need to read this book.Everyone needs to read this book.If I had any money I’d buy a zillion copies of this book and hand them out. I’d give them to loved ones, doctors, strangers on the stree...

  • Letcia

    A great non-fiction book about how fatphobia seeps into so much of our culture, society and ourselves, and a manifesto of sorts about how to create fat justice and go beyond body positivity. This book...

  • jacqueline

    this book was fantastic in so many ways. for starters, i’ve never read a book that has resonated so much with my own experiences being fat, especially growing up as a fat child. it was really valida...

  • Liz

    Required reading for anyone who is invested in creating a more just world. This book made me both furious and sad, ultimately ending on a note of hopefulness: imagining a radically different future in...

  • Lynne Baab

    I had no idea. Those words kept coming to mind as I learned from Aubrey Gordon about how people who fall into the categories she calls “superfat” (women’s sizes 26-32) and “infinifat” (women...