{The Body Liberation Guide} Doing the math

A sneak peek of my shots from my dear friend K.’s wedding. I’m currently booking portrait and boudoir sessions»

This week, I want to build a bit on what I told you in last week’s letter about how getting into media articles works.

I talked a bit about the calculation that goes into responding to media inquiries as an activist: Will the good I can do here outweigh (pun not intended) the negatives of being here?

As a marginalized person, though, there’s a different calculation to be made:

Will the personal harm to me be worth appearing in this particular article or publication?

See, just because a media outlet is willing to be associated with you doesn’t mean they’re willing to protect you. Fat (and other marginalized) people who appear in articles are taking on risk – not just professional, but personal and sometimes physical safety risks – along with that visibility.

Fat people who are visible in mainstream spaces can get mountains of abuse in comment sections, and inevitably some of those harassers will follow people back to their own online spaces and harass them there, too.

The publications that quote, photograph or feature us don’t moderate their comments, they don’t defend us and they don’t help us mitigate risk. They’re in this exactly as far as their profits go, and if a fat person is miserable or gets hurt because of their appearance in that publication, well, that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

Shouldn’t have been fat, I guess, fatty.

This even goes for influencers and models whose photos get used by big retailers. When stores like Torrid feature fat people – especially larger fat people – in their ads or on social media, the same thing happens.

So when we fat activists respond to a media or retailer inquiry, there are calculations and risk management that average-sized and thinner-bodied people simply don’t have to deal with.

Since I was quoted in that Dallas Morning News article (which also appeared on NOLA.com), there’s been an uptick in hate mail in my inbox. I have the support system to deal with this, but so many others don’t.

This is one of the ways the racist, ableist, patriarchal system of anti-fatness is upheld and reinforced. How many other ways can you think of?


Changing the World is Up To You

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The Conversation

Here’s what’s being discussed this week in the world of body acceptance and fat liberation: 

» BBQ chair tip for people with fat friends (watch

» People are perfectly willing to risk their current health status and their lives as long as they don’t think they’ll get fat. (read

» The Guide To Plus Size Mattresses (read

» How many days have you wasted fighting against your body? (watch

» You need to know this about climate change (read

» Before you dismiss a fat person who is telling you about their horrifying, often deeply harmful interactions with healthcare providers by telling us that they are well-meaning, please know that plenty aren’t. (read

🦄 Unicorn chaser: You are a masterpiece in progress. (see)

“Non-restrictive eaters, who eat ‘whatever they want,’ generally don’t want to eat peanut butter all day long—because it doesn’t physically feel all that great for our bodies to do so.  

Unfortunately, however, dieting and restriction disconnects us from this critical biological feedback (like hunger, fullness, etc.), leaving us in a constant state of either trying to control, or rebelling violently against deprivation.” » Isabel Foxen Duke

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Hi there! I'm Lindley. I create artwork that celebrates the unique beauty of bodies that fall outside conventional "beauty" standards at Body Liberation Photography. I'm also the creator of Body Liberation Stock and the Body Love Shop, a curated central resource for body-friendly artwork and products. Find all my work here at bodyliberationphotos.com.