Young, Feminist and Hungry: An Insider’s Perspective On Body Image
As a teenage girl, I’m constantly haunted by social and cultural standards that dictate harmful and confusing messages, like that a low weight is correlated with beauty, that you need to be thin to be desirable, and that young women not only individually need to be thin but should attack those who don’t live up to these standards.
I started to experience issues related to weight and beauty at around the age of 9-10. Most people point to the media as the culprit for these messages and while it certainly plays a part, I actually don’t remember watching shows that portrayed only (or, at least, mainly) thin actresses the way they seem to now. In fact, I remember these shows featuring actresses who would be considered “normal” (which would now …
I love to see women who are comfortable and confident in their skin despite being a different size or shape than what our society markets as the ideal. I love seeing a woman who doesn’t lose her confidence or her great smile just because she has a blemish.
I don’t think we see enough of real women’s bodies (shapes, sizes, blemishes) in a positive context. Even amongst friends, we often hide what we think are our imperfections. I think that if we were exposed to more of what is real and natural, we would all be more comfortable and confident with ourselves
The women who participated in this project are women in my life who I find beautiful and who I knew would want to speak out on this topic. …
I can honestly say I’m sick of hearing about, talking about and thinking about fat. And yet it’s everywhere – whether it’s the fear-mongering headlines that claim our country has been consumed by an obesity epidemic or if it’s the innumerable magazine articles written on the newest get-thin-quick scheme, it’s undeniable that over the years, our society has become obsessed with fat. But despite the often one-sided, overwhelmingly negative attitude our country has towards fat, the question remains: what is the true nature of fat as an issue of health?
As a feminist, I’ve always felt that the way our society views fat on the individual level is seriously messed up (i.e. unrealistic standards set for women’s bodies) But I’d never spent much time thinking about how fat is framed …
If you had asked me six months ago if I was affected by the media’s presentation of women, I would have responded with an unequivocal no. Yes, TV and magazines bombard us with horribly warped images of what a woman is and should be, but after all, I’m a feminist. I can expose myself to images of impossibly skinny, tall, well-dressed teens and look at them with clear eyes and my self-esteem intact. I know they’re not real! Besides, I think I’m attractive already, and just like to read the fashion magazines for the outfits, and nothing else. So what if I skim over the “how to get a hot guy to hook up with you” sections? This stuff really can’t possibly have any effect on me!
Observations in Target: Mass Marketing and Young Females
“Mom, look! That’s Rocky and CeCe, from ‘Shake it Up‘! Can I pleeeeease get one of their clothes?” She stands on her tiptoes to reach the highest shelf and points to a t-shirt with an attached pinstriped vest that is almost identical to the one CeCe is wearing in the poster above the rack of clothes. “I like that one!”
My post-elementary school years have contained very little Disney Channel, which I consumed vigorously as a child. But after spending a week with a seven-year-old, I was fully informed on how Disney is functioning today. I know every person says this about the shows they watched when they were kids, but I truly believe that the shows were much better then, especially for girls. Or maybe it’s just that …
I discovered Maggie Goes On A Diet during one of my morning rituals (I tend to start my days with a cup o’ joe and a few interesting Yahoo! articles). As the above video explains, the book, aimed at girls as young as 6 or 7, is about an overweight 14-year-old who decides to go on a diet after being teased mercilessly by her classmates.
I probably don’t have to tell you that Maggie has sparked a lot of controversy. The media has been raving about so-called “mommy bloggers” who are up in arms over how the book mishandles sensitive body image issues, but what I noticed after sifting through the comments on several news articles is a slightly different attitude:
I know I’m a little late to jump on the “pissed-off-that-the-show-Huge-was-cancelled” band wagon, but I assumed it would be coming on this summer and — big shocker –it’s not. Is it so much to ask that there is at least one show on television that is not about teen vampires or werewolves or girls that put to much stock in high school and start pissing each other off?
Don’t get me wrong, I love a good vampire show and werewolves are cool, too. But being a curvy girl, I would really appreciate a good show for and about curvy people. Do I relate to shows about skinny girls obsessed about social status and fitting in to a pant size smaller than they need? Hell no. But I did …
Love The Body You’ve Got (Take It From A Fat Girl)
I recall a time in elementary school when a friend tried to defend me from a few bullies by saying that I “wasn’t fat, just big-boned.” A few years later, I had a teacher who — probably in an attempt to keep my ego intact — wouldn’t let kids say “fat” in class, only “fluffy.”
To set the record straight, I do not have abnormally large bones. And I am not, nor have I ever been, a rabbit. But whether it’s these sugar-coated terms or the painfully unoriginal “ugly fat girl,” I’ve never quite been able to shake my overweight status for long.
Despite a few traumatizing events (i.e. falling off the jungle gym, losing my paper pilgrim’s hat on Thanksgiving, etc.), I have relatively good memories of elementary school. …