Skip to content

Jennifer Lawrence body shames you more than you might have realized.

Posted in Uncategorized

An alternate version of this post can be found at The Huffington Post. To save my inbox, comments on this version of the post are closed, but feel free to move discussion to the HuffPo version.

Here are some quotes Jennifer Lawrence has made over the years, regarding her weight:

“I’d rather look chubby on screen and like a person in real life.”

“In Hollywood, I’m obese. I’m considered a fat actress. I eat like a caveman. I’ll be the only actress that doesn’t have anorexia rumors! I’m never going to starve myself for a part. I’m invincible. I don’t want little girls to be like, ‘Oh, I want to look like Katniss, so I’m going to skip dinner!’ That was something I was really conscious of during training. I was trying to get my body to look fit and strong, not thin and underfed.”

“If anybody even tries to whisper the word ‘diet,’ I’m like, ‘You can go f– yourself.”

“What are you gonna do? Be hungry every single day to make other people happy? That’s just dumb.”

Tumblr celebrates her in .gif as a paragon of quirk and body acceptance:

jlaw1

jlaw2

jlaw3

jlaw4

jlaw5

One thing that may have escaped your notice, in the orgiastic celebration of JLaw realness that is the internet, is that Jennifer Lawrence looks like this:

jlaw6

Let’s concede the point here that she is, perhaps, a size or two above the Hollywood accepted norm. Let’s also concede the point that it’s admirable, being the star of a movie franchise aimed at teens, that she is concerned about the effect a too-svelte appearance might have on her audience, who are already bombarded with negative body messages every day. I’m not making this post to attack Jennifer Lawrence. I’m making this post to attack the rabid fandom that has grown around her.

I’m not going to cover the fact that it’s fucked up that a girl like Jennifer Lawrence has to justify her perfectly gorgeous body to every single media consumer in the world. We all know that’s fucked up. Let’s focus instead on the fact that in order to appease our own self-doubt about our weight, we, the internet, have decided to ignore how body-shaming the entire image of JLaw, “Spirit Animal” to fat girls everywhere, really is.

First of all, consider her quotes. She would rather look chubby on screen, but like a person in real life. This is a message of positivity only for people who consider themselves chubby, and it comes at the expense of women who are thin. Maybe they’re thin because they’re sick. Maybe, they just like being thin, or they’re naturally slender. What this quote is saying is that these women aren’t people. I want to know, internet: at what percentage of body fat do women earn the right to be people?

I’m certain that a lot of my fellow fatties looked at that quote and rolled their eyes. We know that being fat doesn’t grant one personhood, because our alleged lack of self-control and dignity are directly linked to that body fat percentage. Fat people are not people. They’re fat people. So, what does that quote do? It’s not empowering to anyone but women who look like Jennifer Lawrence. And it’s not a coincidence that she just happens to be the Coke-bottle standard we’re told men should prefer.

So, consider all those .gifs at the top of this post. The ones where she talks about how much food she eats, how she loves McDonald’s fries. Would the internet have embraced those quotes coming from, oh, I don’t know…

melissa mccarthy

I’ve noticed a funny thing about Melissa McCarthy. Well, besides the obvious, that she’s funny. But I’ve noticed that when Jennifer Lawrence talks about her weight, she talks about how much food she eats, and how she’s never going to diet to be thin. And when Melissa McCarthy is quoted about her weight, this is what she says:

“I don’t really know why I’m not thinner than I am.”

“I want to be healthy.”

“I just don’t lose weight easily.”

“Sometimes I wish I were just magically a size 6 and I never had to give it a single thought.”

Because Melissa McCarthy actually is a fat woman, she isn’t allowed to make brash statements about body acceptance. She has to apologize for her body. Every single one of those quotes might as well have just said, “Sorry I’m fat and you have to look at me, everyone.” But it’s all she’s allowed to say, in the confines of our culture. If Melissa McCarthy had said, “If anybody even tries to whisper the word ‘diet,’ I’m like, ‘You can go f– yourself,” the response will most assuredly not be, “How brave! How strong! What a good role model!” The response will be, “What a bad example, encouraging people to be unhealthy! We have an obesity epidemic! Open your eyes, fat is not healthy, sexy, or acceptable! How very dare she!”

Imagine if Melissa McCarthy had made so many public comments about food and McDonald’s. It wouldn’t be cute or funny, it would be schtick. Look at the fat woman, being human and hungry for something bad for her! How grotesquely humorous it is when fat people eat! When Jennifer Lawrence makes these comments, it’s acceptable, because her body is still pleasing to our cultural expectation of voluptuous, slim-waisted, long-necked female beauty.

Comments about how much food Jennifer Lawrence loves to eat further builds the unicorn-like mystique of actresses who maintain cultural expectations of slenderness while claiming that they eat whatever they want and never work out. Is it more damaging to a fat woman’s self-esteem to see a thin woman on a movie screen, or to see that thin woman calling herself fat and claiming her celebrated figure is the product of eating McDonald’s and hating exercise? I’m fat. I eat a lot of McDonald’s. I do exercise, though I sometimes hate it… so, why then, when I admit to these things, am I a public health crisis, and slender, beautiful women who say them are positive role models? I’m pretty sure you know where this is going.

When Jennifer Lawrence says it’s “dumb” to go hungry to make other people happy, she’s saying it with the carefree attitude of a woman who probably will never have to make that choice to conform. Yes, she might be asked to diet for a role. But a woman who looks like Jennifer Lawrence doesn’t have to shop for her clothes in online stores only, because no physical storefronts carry her size. A woman who looks like Jennifer Lawrence probably isn’t going to have a stranger try to stage an impromptu intervention in a Pizza Hut because they’re so, so concerned for her “health.” If a woman who looks like Jennifer Lawrence goes to her doctor to complain of an ailment, she’ll be offered diagnostic tests instead of a diet plan. Jennifer Lawrence can say it’s “dumb” to go on a diet, but Jennifer Lawrence might not be facing weight-related prejudice or illness. Jennifer Lawrence may never be forced to make the choice between going hungry to lose weight versus having a knee and hip replacement at thirty-five.

I’m sure Jennifer Lawrence has body issues. She is a woman in the U.S., after all. Body issues come pre-installed at birth. But simply feeling bad about your own weight doesn’t give you license to shame the bodies of women who are thinner than you are, or the choices of women who are fatter than you are.

What’s even more troubling is that this mythos of the body-image warrior that the internet has created for Jennifer Lawrence has allowed her to say some pretty shitty things without much consequence. As long as she’s the down-to-earth, quirky, “body positive” weirdo, we can let bisexuality erasing and transphobic comments slide?

The reason Jennifer Lawrence is allowed to be a body-positive role model to young girls and “chubby” women is because she is representative of conventional beauty. She is a thin woman, exhibiting the thin privilege (and I know how much people hate that phrase) of making self-conscious body remarks while the rest of the world rushes to assure her that she’s gorgeous. Jennifer Lawrence’s public image has been built on a foundation of fat girl drag. She can call herself fat in interviews. She can actually believe she is fat, if she wants to. But she is not a fat woman, and her experiences do not speak to the experiences of actual fat people, no matter how strenuously Tumblr works to make it seem so.

Did you enjoy this post?

Trout Nation content is always free, but you can help keep things going by making a small donation via Ko-fi!

Or, consider becoming a Patreon patron!

420 Comments

  1. Generally, my response to J.Law, both love and hate, is that she’s 23. Let’s wait and see what happens by the time she’s 33. No one can stay as popular as she is for that long; everyone is subject to wrinkles and slowing metabolisms; everyone says stupid stuff and grows out of it.

    December 11, 2013
    • My problem isn’t with JLaw. It’s the cult of personality that has embraced her as the token sassy fat girl who doesn’t care what anyone thinks.

      December 11, 2013
      • I think she’s consciously manipulating the public and people are just too stupid to notice it.

        December 12, 2013
      • Rachel
        Rachel

        Why are so upset about a girl who doesn’t care what anybody thinks and encourages people to eat whatever they want? What’s wrong with you? You are making yourself look like a jealous, petty woman hater.

        December 28, 2013
        • Because calling a woman jealous and petty for her opinion is the height of feminism and solidarity.

          December 28, 2013
    • When I was 23 I said stuff similar to what JLaw’s lauded for saying (“I’m never dieting again,” “I don’t care how much I weigh,” etc.) and meant it, but the most I got was a knowing eyeroll. ‘Cause I was fat, see, and there’s no way a fat person could really mean they felt okay with or even liked their fat body.

      As for the comments JLaw’s made that are harmful to LGBTQ folks and others, they’re due to ignorance and a lack of empathy, not her age.

      December 12, 2013
    • Tracey
      Tracey

      Also – she is 23. When she hits 33, we’ll see if her metabolism will be able to keep all dem burgers at bay NOM NOM NOM

      adorable

      December 13, 2013
  2. I’d never thought about it this way, but I totally agree that J.Law is “allowed” to talk about how “fat” she is and we all think it’s adorable because she’s in actuality slim. In an era where we’ve watched as the slim curves of a young Lindsay Lohan were starved down into a more “Hollywood” body, it’s refreshing to see a young woman who is slim but solid refuse to follow the same path. I’ve always gotten the impression that Jennifer Lawrence works out, though, to keep herself slim. She certainly spent a lot of quality time in the gym prepping for her role as Katniss.

    December 11, 2013
    • And then you get into that whole “strong, not skinny” thing, which people are JUST starting to realize is problematic and treats skinny women like crap. 🙁

      December 11, 2013
      • Being a woman in America: no matter what your body is like, you just can’t win!

        December 11, 2013
      • Anon
        Anon

        Not to mention, most of the motivational gym posters that say variations of ‘strong, not skinny’ feature super skinny women!

        December 11, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        While there are almost always problems with quippy one-liner ways to describe an issue (ie, people advocating for “strong, not skinny”), I do support the growing notion that skinny doesn’t equal healthy, and am always much more happy to see women in the lime-light who look like they are fit rather than just thin. Women come in many different shapes and sizes, and there are some who are more naturally skinny and others who are more naturally on the heavier side – neither one is inherently “healthy.” But if films are going to show off idealized versions of women, I am much happier to see a woman who looks fit rather than a woman who just looks thin. When girls looks up to these figures I want them to think “I should get into a sport or regular exercise routine so I can look like Jennifer Lawrence!” rather than “I need to diet!”

        I feel particularly strongly about this because I am naturally “skinny,” but still have health issues because growing up media told me that as long as I was thin, I was fine. Now I am trying to get into exercising regularly to help combat those issues, but it’s a lot harder to get into a routine when you’re older, and especially when society keeps telling me that I shouldn’t have any health issues because I’m thin.

        December 11, 2013
      • manybellsdown
        manybellsdown

        I was a super-ooper skinny chick for most of my life; I didn’t top 110 lbs until I was 6 months pregnant. What did I get? “Broomstick” “figure like an 8-year-old boy” “pirate’s dream” (sunken chest har har har)

        Nope, even when you meet the “standard” there’s something wrong with you.

        December 12, 2013
  3. It is one of the things I’ve never understood about this whole thing. She isn’t, you know, actually chubby. I love her and I do think it’s great that she’s not dieting for roles and is positive about food, but sad that a rather impossible standard of her body is the new fat, I guess? When you listen to her in interviews, she clearly has body issues (like most of us!), and listening to the tabloids and ‘hollywood’ talk about her, you’d think she was much heavier. We’ve weirdly accepted her size as what chubby looks like. And my god, she is not. So, I don’t have a problem with celebrating her for body positivity or for her general lovable quirkiness, but I think we need to remind ourselves regularly that she’s actually pretty trim.

    And also, she may eat whatever she wants, and that’s awesome, but you gotta think about how active she is. She may not diet and she may not ‘exercise’ regularly, but doing films is rigorous work and very physical. Particularly during the hunger games movies, she has months of training for the skills she had to learn and the actual physicality of filming where the actors run all day for a 10 second shot in the final film. So if I, with my sedentary lifestyle, were to eat whatever I wanted all the time, I would not look like Jennifer Lawrence. You know what I’m saying?

    (And like you, I do not mean this as a dig against her, but against the fan culture around her and just culture in general, really)

    December 11, 2013
    • Yeah, and all of that is exactly what the internet fandom and a lot of people pushing body acceptance are forgetting. That’s what I find so frustrating about this whole thing. The moment you even try to point these things out, you get, “But look at it from her point of view…” No, I can’t do that. I have to look at it from the point of view of a woman who is fat, in every aspect of her life, not just her job. And from this perspective, making her a mascot for body positivity is insulting.

      December 11, 2013
      • Insanitydividedbyzero
        Insanitydividedbyzero

        As someone who is now “fat” because of a horrible car wreck where I was bedridden for 8 months I now can see it from both sides. I used to be so active that I could shovel in almost 3000 calories a day. I had muscle definition but when I saw the tabloids, girls who looked like me were considered chubby or too masculine. What frustrates me is exactly what you are saying, she doesn’t represent a fat or chubby person. In normal circles she’d be considered incredibly skinny. There is nothing wrong with being skinny or being fat as long as you do the best you can to take care of yourself. I saw my mother struggle with obesity even though she ate an organic vegetarian diet (it turns out her thyroid wasn’t working at all and when they put her on meds to fix it she lost 60 pounds in a month but the meds reacted badly to something else she needed to take for a severe physical issue).

        I recall watching one episode of fashion police where they made a comment about Lindsay Lohan’s thighs touching each other and that she needed to drop some weight when she is perfectly normal. Lindsay has narrow hips and not everyone can have a thigh gap that Hollywood is obsessed with. I have wider hips so even when I started putting on weight it took me 30 pounds before my thighs touched. Hollywood has some really fucked up ideas on beauty and it sucks that someone who looks normal has to be the champion of fat acceptance and because of this it is making it worse for actual fat acceptance.

        December 16, 2013
      • Christina A
        Christina A

        The idea that you can’t be a promoter or “mascot” for body positivity if you’re not fat or if you’re, as you’ve put it, “conventionally attractive” is NONSENSE. Anyone can be a promoter of body positivity…that’s the point! It’s not “fat body positivity” or “thin body positivity” – there are no descriptors in front of it, it’s body positivity for all bodies and persons. Having a positive body image and the merit of promoting that healthy mindset doesn’t get diminished by the appearance of the person promoting it. A fat person promoting body positivity is no better or worse, or more reliable or more worthy of promoting positive body image. It’s ridiculous to assert that someone who you (rather derisively) call “conventionally attractive” can’t speak out against negative body image etc. The whole point of body positivity is to love your body and your image regardless of what you look like or what society says you should be.

        December 30, 2013
  4. I.D. Blind
    I.D. Blind

    Thank you for this post!
    I was wondering if I was the only one thinking absolutely the same. Media keeps talking about her “fat” and how she’s ok with it, but, where’s that fat???
    Glad to know I’m not alone.

    December 11, 2013
  5. JD
    JD

    I suspect Jennifer Lawrence is responding to her own experiences which include tons of anorexic people–and probably some overweight behind the scenes types–telling her she needs to lose weight in order to be acceptable as an actress. Her understandable reaction is “Are you f#cking kidding me?!?! I’m fine.” And then recounting to reporters the ridiculous assertion that she’s “fat” or “obese” when anyone with eyes can see that she’s not. It may be a part of her strategy to get those people off her back by publicly ridiculing their putting pressure on her to get skinnier, and to get her fan base on her side so those people will back off. So I tend to side with her on this issue and don’t see her comments as intending to address any situation other than the one she’s in–a healthy woman fighting back agains her profession’s fixation with extreme skinniness. I’d applaud if more supermodels would do the same, but I doubt they have the power; they have to conform or lose work. In those professions the fight to be skinny becomes a disease, with sometimes deadly consequences:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/12/31/world/europe/31caro.html?_r=0

    http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2007/jan/14/fashion.features4

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2137423/Bethaney-Wallace-Anorexic-cover-girl-model-19-dies-sleep-weight-drops-6-stone.html

    December 11, 2013
  6. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Thanks for this post, I have spent quite a bit of time despairing that she’s considered ‘chubby’.
    Kinda O/T but I had already seen the yourfave Tumblr and her comment about shyness made me feel pretty bad about myself too. Plus the Chaz Bono comment is just nasty. Still like her but it makes me side-eye.

    December 11, 2013
  7. Marie
    Marie

    I never thought about how much she does this until now. I’m actually seriously wondering if she doth protest too much. Or perhaps she really is attacked by people in Hollywood for her perfectly fine body more than we’ll ever know?

    Whatever it is, you are totally right. I get that she’s trying to do something positive, but she could do it in a better way.

    December 11, 2013
    • Insanitydividedbyzero
      Insanitydividedbyzero

      Interviewers constantly talk about body types and what a person does to diet (if you are a female actress or model) I’m sure it just gets frustratingly repetitive even though I do think it is bad for young girls to be told she is considered fat.

      December 16, 2013
  8. JD
    JD

    I literally had to look up why people thought the Chaz Bono comment was offensive. Granted everything that comes out of Lawrence’s mouth isn’t perfect, but plenty of people didn’t think the Chaz Bono thing was a problem. Including transgendered people. Just saying. Maybe the problem was she named a pet after him? That could be seen as offensive no matter the gender status. Like if I named my dog Tom Cruise because I found him in a Scientology parking lot. It’s a dog! It’s not really part of the Church! Offensive to Scientologists and to Tom Cruise!

    See comments, which go both ways:
    http://www.newnownext.com/jennifer-lawrence-ellen-degeneres-chaz-bono-transgender-persons/11/2012/

    December 11, 2013
    • Marvel
      Marvel

      I am really unsure as to why you felt this comment was necessary. One trans person did speak up in the comments there, yes, but they also said they could see why it would be offensive to others.

      I am trans, and I am offended. The fact that another trans person was not offended doesn’t cancel that out. But what I am most offended at is the way you are misusing that person’s comment here. I really doubt they meant for their comment to be used by a cis person to defend the Chaz Bono comment as totally okay, as if somehow the fact that one trans person was not offended means the rest of us are all hysterical. The fact that you know a trans person, or saw a trans person’s comment on a website once, does not give you a license to speak for trans people’s perspectives on this issue. Please stop.

      December 11, 2013
      • Faaaace
        Faaaace

        I don’t think they were speaking for trans* people, just expressing their confusion. I generally find that expressing confusion opens up dialogue, which is always positive. People can’t learn without discussion.

        Please also note that I find the comment pretty offensive, too, and am not at all defending or explaining it away. I just think talking is the first step to understanding.

        December 11, 2013
      • Regardless of the intent, saying, “I don’t see a problem with this,” when you’re not in the marginalized group isn’t the greatest strategy for starting a discussion on equal ground. It’s flat out stating that there’s no discussion needed, because the person’s mind is made up. Does that make sense? I feel like I’m not communicating well today at all.

        December 11, 2013
      • JD
        JD

        Clearly my post didn’t come across as intended if anyone thought I was saying that all trans people shouldn’t be offended or that the conversation should end, or even that I don’t see a problem with it. I said I had to look up why people were offended, and even then I saw some trans people who weren’t, and gave one example. Then I theorized why it might offend people. I wasn’t saying “case closed.” Faaace is right, I was trying to invite someone to explain (apparently not very well) what the offense is. Which I still haven’t seen, because all people are saying is “it was a horrible comment” without going into why.

        So, if it isn’t because it was naming a cat after a trans person and therefore automatically an insult, why is it? I mean, when I looked at the rest of Lawrence’s comments she said stuff like the cat presented as male even though technically it was female. How is that offensive to a trans person who is male although formerly physically a female (or technically, or biologically, or however you prefer to phrase it)? I seriously don’t understand, unless the problem is that it’s a cat and, apparently, cats can’t be trans (which I actually don’t agree with; if people can be trans, logically other animals should be able to be as well even if they never have surgery). Or unless it’s because naming a pet after a trans person is insulting because it’s a cat. Which I understand, but would be the same insult for anyone.

        December 11, 2013
      • JD
        JD

        And Jenny: You’re communicating fine! People misunderstand each other all the time on the internet, not your fault. You raised a really interesting topic and expressed your opinion on it, and your opinion is totally valid. Other people had other opinions and they have valid points too. It’s great to get conversations going on this stuff; the fact that people have strong opinions isn’t because you didn’t communicate well, it’s because people have strong opinions. Hugs!

        BTW… I had posted earlier about Lawrence’s weight comments but apparently the comment needed moderating? At any rate, it’s not showing up. I had put a swear word (with vowels replaced with symbols) into an imagined Lawrence comment, which is the only thing I can think of that might have triggered moderation. Could you pretty please release it? 🙂

        December 11, 2013
      • JD, when I say I don’t feel like I’m communicating very well, it’s because I’m noticing that I’m agreeing with stuff people are saying as contrary opinions, so I find myself going, “Okay, I obviously didn’t make it clear that I didn’t mean Jennifer Lawerence was the issue, rather than the culture that has embraced these comments.” That kind of thing. Where I can see where stuff went wrong. Most of my posts are basically word vomit, so sometimes I don’t get things all quite in the right places. 😀

        As for the comments, I’ve been having to unmoderate a lot of comments today, and I don’t see yours in there anywhere. 🙁 I’m not trying to not release it, it’s just not showing up in my thing yet.

        December 11, 2013
      • JD
        JD

        Aww, Jenny, I still think your communication is fine! The great thing about the internet is that it opens a dialogue and you get to consider points you hadn’t thought of when you were thinking about your post topic. That’s why Ph.D. candidates take their dissertation, or professors take their proposed paper, and present it at as many conferences as they can before the thing gets officially published. Because then they get feedback from other people who point out stuff that the Ph.D. candidate/professor hadn’t considered. No one can think of everything, so you put your thoughts out there and see what feedback you get. The fact that you agree with some of what is said doesn’t invalidate your original point at all, and it doesn’t mean you weren’t communicating well. It just means you aren’t a deity who can see every topic from all points of view at once. Although, of course, we in Trout Nation all think you’re a goddess. 🙂

        December 12, 2013
      • Marvel
        Marvel

        If it is that difficult for you to understand, I think you’ll find that many people on the internet have explained their stances on it already, and their arguments are easy to locate using a google search. I don’t want to rehash it here because, frankly, I get tired of explaining things that (in my mind) should be obvious on a daily basis. You found an example of people who do not find it problematic. I find it a little hard to believe that you are incapable of locating examples of people who do, which is why I found this comment to be unnecessary.

        If you truly find their arguments impossible to comprehend, I would suggest looking up and reading more work by trans people in general, so you can better understand the perspectives that these people are coming from in their responses. As just one individual trans person, I cannot do all of that work for you. It requires engaging with the trans community as a whole.

        December 12, 2013
      • Insanitydividedbyzero
        Insanitydividedbyzero

        I never thought about as much as I should, I’ve always named my female cats male names but never considered that someone transgendered might find it upsetting. Granted my intention when naming my cats has always been after people I love. Granted my current cat is named Frankie because Frankie Goes to Hollywood was playing when she reached her paw out to me when I was adopting her. I do think that opening up dialog is important and I am learning something new here. I do try to be as understanding as I can with my trans friends but sometimes there are things that don’t occur to me until they are mentioned.

        December 16, 2013
    • Marvel
      Marvel

      It it helps at all, I don’t see anything wrong with naming a female cat a typically male name. The problem comes when someone is using an actual trans person (like Chaz Bono) as a punchline.

      December 18, 2013
  9. erbear0331
    erbear0331

    I could imagine that perhaps, in the world of hollywood, Jennifer Lawrence does indeed think she is “fat” or “chubby” or that’s what she is told. Perhaps she is quite jaded because she has spent a large part of some very formative years in Hollywood where if you have any body fat at all you would be put in the “chubby” category. And perhaps she is speaking out whenever and wherever she can against those who would try to make her conform. Like a defense mechanism or because she’s angry that people are trying to make her feel guilty for having a healthy body. But I don’t really know her or her motives.

    You are right. She is not fat or chubby. She is quite slim and she looks quite athletic to me. I would imagine she would have to do a lot of exercise and strength training to be in the roles she’s in. (Incidentally, I don’t remember her saying that she doesn’t exercise, but of course I could be wrong.) And you are totally right that it is only acceptable that she talk about food because she is slim, whereas for someone who is actually chubby it would be completely unacceptable in the eyes of our society. She could most certainly choose her words more wisely and be food positive and health positive without the fat shaming. Honestly, and again I don’t know her from Adam, I bet she has no clue that’s what she’s doing. Alas, as a commenter posted above, she is but 23.

    I guess the main thing is that maybe we all just need to learn to stop judging people – who they are, what they do, what they need to be healthy – based on appearances alone. And maybe we can all just stop talking about other people’s weight and degrees of fatness and just concern ourselves with our own health and well-being. But I guess that is kind of a pipe dream.

    December 11, 2013
    • I think I would be totally comfortable with advocating not judging people’s degrees of fatness if we lived in a world in which my lack of judgement toward thin women was reflected back upon me by others not judging my fatness. But the cult of “let’s celebrate our bodies at any weight!” seems to focus only on women with conventionally attractive, or slightly north on on the scale of conventional attractiveness, bodies. But as a fat person, it really grinds my gears to hear conventionally attractive women speaking out about body acceptance and being heard and celebrated, when fat women who do it face derision and lectures about healthy living.

      December 11, 2013
      • erbear0331
        erbear0331

        Yeah I totally hear you and agree. I actually meant the “not judging” thing to be for everyone. Don’t judge someone chubby and make assumptions about their health and don’t judge someone skinny and make assumptions about their health. (physical or mental) I, myself, struggle with this. I am in public health and have done some research on obesity, etc. After I graduated I realized I was looking at people differently. I found myself thinking “if only he had access to better foods and places to exercise” or “if only she wasn’t body shamed into not eating”. But the thing is, I know nothing about these people and I have no place or cause to think anything about how healthy or unhealthy they are. And, seriously, who am I to judge whether someone is healthy or not? Just because people are “skinny” does not mean they are healthy. I have some family members who eat the most processed foods ever, rarely a leafy green hits their lips, and they are never seen exercising beyond a light walk around the block, but they are all fairly skinny. On the other hand, I have family who exercises and eats fairly healthy and they are not slender at all. So, yeah, I guess I’m “starting with the man in the mirror”.

        And one more thing, it makes me so infuriated that despite all the ground we’ve covered over the years as women, the media and our culture is still focused on women’s bodies and their looks above their talent. Like it HAS to be a topic of conversation equal to how amazing of actresses Jennifer Lawrence and Melissa McCarthy are. Not a dig on you or any of us for that matter. We are responding to what is being pushed upon us. Just an observation about how inherently misogynistic this all is. How this continues to be a topic of conversation forced upon us by “the man” and sometimes just our fellow human… I was watching the Voice the other day and this all female group performed and the first thing Shawn Stockman commented on was the women’s looks. Not their incredible performance. Their beauty. And I’m sure he did that with all the good feelings in his heart, but CMON MAN! We are clearly not past the time when we can just not first look at a woman’s beauty or body type. Which is honestly annoying for me. When I was in grad school I was a young, fairly attractive, athletic build. And many people did not take me seriously. This is also academia, but I found I had/have to work twice as hard as others for people to take me seriously. Ok end of rant.

        December 12, 2013
  10. Alexandra Aimee
    Alexandra Aimee

    I tend to agree with you on about 99% of everything, so I’m actually glad that I disagree this time because it allows me to maintain my own personal delusion of possessing independent though, rather than being some sort of trout nation syndicate, lol!

    Let me give a little background on the perspective I am coming at this from before I explain why I disagree. I acted from the age of 8 to around 26. When I was 18 I moved to Los Angeles and after several years of pure grind I got a real agent at a major agency and a real manager and began going on real auditions for real parts in real movies with real lines. At that time I was 5’3″ and between 119-124lbs. depending on the season. My body naturally gathers extra blubber the second it gets cold and sheds it again the second it gets warm. I measured in at something like 35-28-34, and I was told I was fat DAILY. My agent told me I needed to lose wight. My manager would call to ask how I had been eating lately before sending me on auditions. I was sent home from auditions for not possessing the right body type, and my manager was told never to send me again by one casting director. It was so constant that I actually truly began to believe it. Imagine if part of your job, which you depended on to put food in your mouth, involved your direct manager and the CEO of your company evaluating your body weight constantly. It get in your head fast, and it fucks you up. I consider myself a very strong person, but it did a number on me like nothing else ever has. I became so self conscious that I turned into a wretched actress who spent her whole time on screen mugging, trying to prove I was hot. It took years of struggle for me to deprogram myself. (bonus picture of me being “too fat to work!” shared with a hearty fuck you to everyone who ever said it!: http://imgur.com/y1mWdob )

    So, to me Jennifer Lawrence isn’t a girl with a perfect body “defending” that perfect body, although I can completely understand how someone could possess that perspective. From my perspective the way she behaves is atypically brave for the specific situation she’s in. I certainly wasn’t able to keep my cool about it like she does at her age.

    I’m having trouble making sure I am phrasing my main point so it’s not offensive, but here it is: To me, there is something brave about Jennifer Lawrence saying fuck the body pressure because I’m at a healthy weight that would be absent in Melissa McCarthy saying fuck the body pressure at an unhealthy weight. That said, I do think Melissa McCarthy would have the right to say fuck you to anyone who told her to diet because, hello, it’s her body and no one who isn’t a medical professional should ever tell anyone to diet ever ever ever no matter their weight. But, to me, comparing someone defending their healthy weight that is frequently under attack at work to someone defending an unhealthy weight is apples and oranges.

    I also think that sometimes Jennifer Lawrence’s rabid fan base gets her unfairly targeted for criticism. For instance, in the link of awful things she said that you posted the author is offended Jennifer said something about Katness being a man with a vagina because Jennifer implied that “men can’t have vaginas.” Ok. I get it. It’s not a totally trans PC statement, but criticizing that seems a rather high bar to hold someone to. I get gender norm deviation shaming, but at a certain point we need to be able to use the words in our language to describe our feeling simply sometimes, and this specific criticism like an awfully big nit pick to me.

    So. There’s my controversial opinion.

    December 11, 2013
    • I agree that some of the statements that she got picked up on seemed unnecessarily harsh. Like that one about her childhood and her family drinking and whatnot, what the hell was wrong with that? Surely she’s still allowed to talk about things that were positive in her life even if they may ring less than positive for others. I guess because my childhood was similar I don’t understand the issues there, it was fun and I didn’t turn out terribly.

      December 11, 2013
      • Exactly. I think a lot if times instead of appreciating that she is more gender and body and social norm aware than most people (famous or not) those of us who consider ourselves to be accepting of different ways of existing rip her down for not being perfect…. Which is actually pretty hypocritical.

        The Chaz Bono comment sucks though. No defending that.

        December 11, 2013
      • I agree Alexandra, the Chaz Bono one wasn’t her best work. The Mystique one was also pretty ordinary. However I am still overall a fan, I think because on the whole I see what she’s trying to do and it’s meant to be positive. It sucks that a Melissa McCarthy can’t share a similar message of self acceptance without being shouted down but we can’t blame Jennifer Lawrence for that. If Jennifer works more on her LGBTQI awareness she’ll have me 100% back onside.

        December 11, 2013
      • Yeah, I think the childhood one was a bit harsh to wing her on. It’s her experience to own and present the way she wants to.

        December 11, 2013
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous

      This. Thank you for posting, I agree with you. I also feel somewhat blasphemous about disagreeing with Jenny. I have no where near the same experiences as you or even Jenny herself but as I was reading, I couldn’t help but defend Jennifer Lawrence in my head, thinking she was defending her body against the Hollywood standard of “thin” and “healthy” rather than the real-world standard, for lack of a better term. I will concede that the fandom surrounding her because she freely makes comments about liking to eat is off the charts. I also concede that it isn’t fair that Melissa McCarthy couldn’t make the same comments if she wanted to because she’s “not healthy.” I do disagree however, that because Jennifer Lawrence said them, it’s body shaming. That really isn’t fair either.

      December 11, 2013
    • faithbygrace
      faithbygrace

      First, I LOVED seeing this post..as a current fat woman and a former skinny girl. Yes, the societal-approved prejudice against fat people angers me daily. We ALL have issues, but the biggest problem with being fat is that MY issue is right out there for everyone to see and judge. (You can’t see faults like overspending, beating kids, alcoholism, etc. just by looking at someone.)

      Second, though, I do agree with Alexandra. My niece grew up in LA. As a gorgeous, tall, thin teenager, she felt constant pressure to be skinny. She wasted away to sickeningly thin, and still struggles with body issues today even as a healthier (but still very skinny) size 2/4. I can appreciate JLaw’s use of “real person” to describe her weight after seeing the real life skeletons that our celebrities are. (The camera often hides what they look like in real life.) JLaw has a round face that looks much heavier than her body weight. She IS fat by Hollywood standards just from her face alone.

      So, I guess I’m saying that yes, we do need more and better examples of accepting one’s body type…but maybe having a “thinly fat” JLaw pave the way will help.

      December 11, 2013
      • With respect, if “thinly fat” celebs were going to pave the way, this would have all been wrapped up with mid-90’s Drew Barrymore, Kate Winslet, Jeanine Garrafalo, or Margret Cho. But all those “thinly fat” celebs slimmed down, and nothing changed.

        December 11, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        Don’t forget the difference between Jessica Alba in season 1 of Dark Angel and season 2, I wanted to cry when I saw how much weight she lost because she was so so beautiful in season 1.

        December 11, 2013
    • My one issue with this reply is that we don’t actually know that Melissa McCarthy’s weight is unhealthy. It’s hard to determine what unhealthy even *is*, since our cultural assumption in general is “fat body = unhealthy until proven otherwise” while “thin body = healthy until proven otherwise.” In other words, you’d have to do a lot more work to convince the average person that a thin woman was unhealthy at her weight than that a fat woman was unhealthy at hers, so in a de facto sense, “healthy” isn’t a neutral term that gets applied equally in all cases. And specifically, again, when it comes to Melissa McCarthy, we can’t possibly know what her situation is.

      That said, I agree with the bulk of this response! (Right down to being sorta thrilled to disagree with Jenny because it’s like proof I really have my own brain that occasionally forms independent thought. >.>)

      I’ve never gotten the sense that Jennifer Lawrence is trying to speak for anyone other than herself. The quotes and gifs above don’t necessarily persuade me that she is, either. While it is completely, totally flawed for fandom/the media to celebrate Jennifer Lawrence for her valorous body acceptance while treating Melissa McCarthy (or other actresses of similar body type) with suspicion or derision, I don’t see how JLaw is creating this situation or even really making it worse. I think it’s better for her to speak up and say that she likes her body and enjoys food than to say that she doesn’t–and honestly, if someone told me I didn’t adhere to the beauty standard, the way Alexandra describes it happening to her in her comment and the way it has happened to Jennifer Lawrence, I don’t know how long it would take me to find the strength/conviction to say, “Yes I completely do, and here’s what’s wrong with what you just said.”

      Like the first commenter said, I’m waiting for 33 when it comes to JLaw. I don’t think she’s done growing yet.

      December 11, 2013
      • I’m honestly really conflicted about the fat is unhealthy thing. My husband is a doctor who washed out of primary care and headed for a lower patient contact specialty. One of the reasons he did this was because it wore him down so much to see people kill themselves with food so regularly. In almost all cases most people who are obese would be healthier if they could snap their fingers and be a BMI that fell within the normal range. I truly believe that to be a solid scientific fact. I also know that you can’t snap your fingers and change your weight, and of course all thin people are not healthier than all overweight people.

        To complicate things I also know ‘fat is less healthy than thin’ is used as a weapon and I have a deep desire to strip that weapon of its power. That desire conflicts with what I believe to be medical facts about weight.

        In short, I agree with you… And I don’t agree with you… And I’m a work in progress on this issue, lol.

        December 11, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        Hey, Alexandra, you wanna post where your husband works so I never have to see them? Because if your husband is a doctor who doesn’t understand how science work, and that BMI was invented to measure POPULATIONS, not individuals and it has no measure on how healthy a person is, that’s TERRIFYING. Now how about go reading this blog http://fathealth.wordpress.com/ and see what happens when doctors treat fat, not the person.

        Also I could sit here and tell you about how I’m in the deathfat category and more often eat too little than too much and how ELMM and CICO are both complete bull, but I don’t actually have to defend my right to eat and exist to people on the internet so I’m not going to.

        December 11, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @Alexandra, I’m always really conflicted about this issue too. I never think it’s okay to shame people, but I think it’s also super important to promote healthy habits. Not because “you don’t want to get fat” but because you just don’t want to have heart disease, diabetes, or the myriad health disorders unhealthy habits foster. (in anyone with unhealthy habits – thin, overweight, medium, morbidly obese, anorexic, etc.)
        And in my opinion, having a high body fat percentage isn’t healthy, so I’m like, how can we be body positive and also promote personal health? Because they shouldn’t be mutually exclusive, but it always seems like they are.

        December 12, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        @The-Great-Dragon: Nobody is obligated to be healthy. If I want heart disease and diabetes, that’s my business and I can be as unhealthy as I want to be. Nobody has to be healthy to have worth as a human being or to be body positive. There’s a thing in FA circles called a “good fatty” which is basically when you defend being fat by saying “I eat well! I excercise!” And while that’s perfectly valid and fine, it’s not the only reason it’s okay to be fat. It’s okay if you never excercise and you exist solely on carbs. Because it’s your business, and nobody else’s.

        Also, your opinion on high body fat? Not a fact. It’s your opinion. Look up Holley Mangold and Sarah Robles to start with and tell me how unhealthy they are.

        December 12, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        Also if you’re that concerned about health that high percentage of body fat scares you, want to talk about how regular I am? How my period is? How about the results of my latest pap smear? Since health is so concerning.

        December 12, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @Laina, I’m not sure why you feel the need to argue that my opinion is an opinion, when I clearly called it one. (Although, my question is – would I need to be getting scientific studies and objective research evidence if I was claiming that being underweight or having too little body fat was unhealthy?)

        Furthermore, yeah, no one is obligated to be healthy, but holy geez, is unhealthiness really something we should promote? If you want heart disease, fine, and I don’t think you deserve less respect as a human being for it, as far as your right to just exist and participate in society is concerned, but if you want heart disease, and you’re actively doing things to get it, then yeah, your health care provider is probably going to focus on that. And yeah, I’m gonna be honest, heart disease isn’t the gold standard I’d want to promote.

        Saying “yeah kids, it’s totes alright if you want heart disease” doesn’t scream body positivity to me. Anymore than saying “STDs? So what? Go on kids, have as much unsafe sex as you want, who cares” screams sex positivity. There’s a difference in saying that “everyone has value as a human being, regardless of their body shape or weight, but we’d still like people to grow up happy and healthy” and saying that “It doesn’t matter if people are at unhealthy weights. You never need to exercise, and who cares what you eat, and it’s fine to want heart disease, who gives a crap? Besides, the science is all wrong anyway, and until you prove otherwise, obesity is no longer an epidemic and there’s no reason to look into the foods people are eating or why they’re unhealthy, or why food is specifically being designed in cheap, unhealthy ways that are causing a myriad of weight and health issues across the globe. Everything’s fine, let’s just ignore it.”

        December 13, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @Laina, I said I was concerned about health, I didn’t say I was concerned about you. So your pap smears and menstrual cycles? Don’t matter to me at all.

        But you know what, let’s talk about PCOS, and how high body fat in women increases the risk of ovarian cysts, which can also, just fyi, increase the risk of cancer. Let’s talk about how PCOS can also lead to infertility, meaning someone who wants to have children might miss out because, hey, let’s just ignore every study up until now that doesn’t meet Laina’s satisfaction. Let’s talk about asthma, and arthritis, and sleep apnea.

        I’m not saying anyone should fit into any type of mold here or that people who deviate from the norm should be treated like crap. I’m not saying being overweight (which I am) or obese is a horrible thing and everyone who is either of those things should be stoned. I’m saying we should be able to promote body positivity and still talk about the above issues without someone swooping in going “That’s just your opinion, that’s not fact.”

        I’m all for changing the dialogue on health, because as it exists, it’s all “DON’T GET FAT” and fails to actually explore the issue in any sort of in-depth, non-body shaming, effective way. What I’m not for is scrapping any dialogue on health altogether because it’s more convenient for people not to confront the health risks of their body type.

        December 13, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        @The-Great-Dragon Because when people ask about health? The ONLY thing they ask about is weight.

        Also, I HAVE PCOS, thank you. I had it when I was 13 and probably 100 pounds smaller and I have it now. It is not caused by my weight and in fact probably contributes to my weight. So, hey, tell me more about how it’s my fault I might be infertile because it’s my fault!

        December 13, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        @The-Great-Dragon I could also show you where the people who originally did the study linking obesity and sleep apnea faked the results. And admitted it. http://www.thefederalregister.com/d.p/2009-04-02-E9-7411 But obviously the studies I link to don’t count.

        December 13, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @Laina, I didn’t say the studies you linked to didn’t matter. I implied that you were biased against tests that didn’t lean in your favour.

        I’ll admit that I didn’t know about the falsified sleep apnea test results. That’s important information to know, thank you for the link.

        As far as your PCOS – I don’t care. Just because your weight didn’t put you at risk for PCOS doesn’t make it not true for other people, and honestly, I wouldn’t care if your PCOS did happen because of your weight. Do with your body what you like, it’s not my business and I don’t care. I care about the message we send as a society and the people (mainly children) who receive that message and how that puts them at risk. I don’t care about you, this isn’t about you, my message of health isn’t directed at you, and all of that is why I’m done talking to you.

        December 13, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        @The-Great-Dragon PCOS is not caused by weight. Period. But keep spreading false information, that’s nice.

        December 13, 2013
      • Nicole
        Nicole

        Apparently, Alexandra, since I’m unhealthy because I have a chronic illness, I’m not a worthy human being. I can never be the healthy ideal that you seem to think everyone should strive for and be, because it’s just that easy! And I guess I can never promote being happy and accepting of my life as it is because I’m unhealthy, and I’d be promoting unhealthiness.

        December 15, 2013
      • @Lania, I’m still not trying to be rude, and hope you can see this as an honest question I am asking because I do want to understand where you’re coming from: You mention Holley Mangold as one of your examples of someone who would be characterized by most as being at an unhealthy weight, but I assume you feel that the fact that she’s an Olympic athlete refutes that idea. However, I just have to know how you feel about her being part of this seasons cast of The Biggest Loser? She’s been very vocal about feeling that her weight has hurt her as an athlete in clips I’ve seen from the show. How do you reconcile her own personal assessment of her weight as unhealthy that with seeing her as a healthy role model?

        December 15, 2013
      • @Nicole, pulling that from me saying “However, I firmly believe whether that’s true or not doesn’t much matter. I cast no judgment against someone for not being in peak health” is one of the greatest magic tricks I’ve ever seen! Again? Again?

        December 15, 2013
      • @Nicole if you decide you want to have an honest chat with me I will happily oblige, but I feel no responsibility to act as a post for you to place your self perpetuating ideas of persecution on so that you can attack them. Forgive me if I’m a bit cranky. I spent the day before yesterday in the hospital dealing with complication of my autoimmune disorder.

        Honestly, Jens blog is generally such a great place for conversation and open dialogue that is respectful and involves two listening parties. But, I’m done listening and baring my beliefs if everyone is just going to drag things wildly out of context then go on the attack. I don’t know what is up with this post. So much shouting and no dialogue.

        December 15, 2013
      • Nicole
        Nicole

        I actually apologize, Alexandra. I meant my reply to be to The-Great-Dragon, but got the names mixed up. And I realize that my reply seems dramatic. I’m just trying to point out that when we make the fat issue about health and how we should all strive to be healthy that we’re delving into ableism and an entirely different form of discrimination. If you shame people for being unhealthy, where does the line end?

        December 15, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @Nicole, I originally typed out a long reply, but I’m honestly really done with this. And frankly it doesn’t matter, since you’ll only find a way to be conveniently offended by what I didn’t say and I’m 100% finished with hearing about other people’s issues.

        None of this has anything to do with JLaw and Jenny’s blog post anyway, and none of us are accomplishing anything other than filling up the comments thread with needless wank.

        December 15, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        @alexandraaimee If you think that the Biggest Loser is a health show, I suggest you do some googling.That’s a show about ABUSE, not health. So I’ll start there.

        December 15, 2013
      • @Laina, I have been given exactly what I deserve. I don’t know why I thought I could ask you an honest question and get an honest answer when all you’ve done in this entire thread is make straw men out of everything anyone says then burn them down with self satisfaction. If you’re not familiar with the straw man principal of argumentation I highly suggest you look it up. It will be very helpful for you in future discussions where you hope to sway minds or build consensuses.

        Where exactly did I say or imply that I thought BL was a “healthy” show? I didn’t. My real question was hard to answer, so rather than doing try you decided to “answer” something I didn’t ask. You answered the question, “Is BL a healthy show?”, or replied to the statement “I think BL is a healthy show.” I didn’t ask that question or make that statement, so you are basically talking to yourself.

        What I did ask you was: How do you feel about the fact that one of your healthy high-weight role models has actually come out very publicly and said things like: “My message has always been, ‘You have to love yourself.’ I loved who I was, who I am; I love everything about it. But I decided I needed to make a change for me, for weightlifting and ultimately for my health.” (Source: http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/olympics/2013/10/15/holley-mangold-says-biggest-loser-helped-injury/2987319/)

        How do you square her own self assessment of her weight as not being the best “for her health” (her words, not mine) with you saying she is the proof that weight and health aren’t linked?

        I want to know how you feel about this. I’m genuinely curious as to whether you know something I don’t, or have a view point I can’t see on the issue, but I’m afraid I will likely never get to learn how you feel, because all you are interested in doing is “winning”, and, ironically, no one wins like that.

        December 16, 2013
      • @Nicle, I appreciate the apology. The way the comments work on this platform is not straight forward.

        December 16, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        @alexandra It’s been five days. Maybe the fact that I typed 3 sentences is a hint I’m tired of talking to you????

        December 16, 2013
      • Blush Rose
        Blush Rose

        @Alexandra, yeah, I have also noticed that the people who visit this blog love to spread their snark. If you don’t agree with them, they attack. It’s probably best not to read the comments here, since I don’t much care for the members of Troutnation.

        and @Laina, you really are a piece of work. You are done talking to Alexandra, so you came back after one day (not 3) to tell her that? Maybe this comment, “So I’ll start there.” made her think you weren’t done? And obviously you aren’t, since you feel the need to have the last work? OMG, grow the eff up! And don’t bother to post a response to me, since unlike the rest of the people in this thread, I won’t be back to read any childish response.

        If you people like to be fat, go ahead and stuff your faces, get your heart disease and diabetes and die. None of the rest of us care. If you die, then we don’t have to look at you anymore! UGH!

        December 16, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @BlushRose, I was originally done commenting on this thread, but I just wanted to say that I feel your response is incredibly inflammatory, rude, and dismissive. I don’t have a problem with people being overweight and I don’t have a problem with people having health issues and I don’t have a problem with people stuffing their faces (and not all of these things are inherently linked.) Like I said, there’s a huge difference between body shaming and promoting health, and telling people who are obese and overweight that they should go and die so you don’t have to look at them? That’s not just body shaming, but it’s awful and inhumane.

        This response is extremely inappropriate (seriously, think about all the people here you’re telling to go die.) And just sad frankly, considering how hostile this thread already got. I may not agree with Laina, but she and everyone else doesn’t deserve this kind of hatred.

        December 16, 2013
      • @BlushRose, I do not appreciate your entry into this conversation either. Anyone reading this chain can clearly see that Laina has attacked my husband’s professional qualifications based on MY use of the term BMI (because, you know, when I married him the depths of his medical knowledge earned over a decade of study magically appeared in my head too!), attacked me, then childishly refused to talk to me more when I asked a tough, honest question. It’s clear as day, and if she thinks she’s somehow shown herself in a good light I would imagine she’s standing alone with that thought.

        All your entry does is make her anger and irrationality about the subject look completely justified. You’ve essentially stolen the high road from my side of this discussion. I don’t appreciate that. I had to take a lot of deep breaths and do a lot of white knuckling to keep it. Your comments are hateful and mark the lowest strikes that have been given thus far into this argument. They don’t help my side of things at all, all they do is hurt people.

        December 16, 2013
      • Anonymous
        Anonymous

        BLUSH ROSE.

        ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?

        If you don’t like the commenters here, and you surely must not like me, because I’m a fat person who continues to live in defiance of your aesthetic preferences, then why the hell are you here? The only time you leave a comment is to make some homophobic remark about how disgusting gay sex is, and then whine about how fucking persecuted you are by the other commenters, who are just sick of reading your “ew, gay people!” crap all the time. Then you bust in here and tell them to get diabetes and DIE? You come to my blog and tell ME to get diabetes and die? WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH YOU?

        You weren’t even involved in the conversation. You actually made the person you were defending angry with you. This was a fucking nasty argument, and you came in here and managed to unite both sides because they were so pissed at you. Do you have any concept of how hilarious a failure that is? Do you really not understand that when people disagree with you here, it’s not because they’re a hive mind, but because you are routinely saying things that are so genuinely offensive, Anne Coulter would think they were in poor taste?

        I cannot believe people like you are allowed to walk around and speak the way you do, yet Charles Manson is behind bars. That is where I am at now. I have tried, long and hard, to not moderate comments here, but I’m gonna moderate yours, if you ever leave one again. Any comment or response you make from here out will be deleted. Your insights are no longer needed. On anything. Literally anything. On my fatness, on the fatness of others, on gay sex and whether or not people should have it or read about it, nothing. I could write an entire post specifically on coming up with pen names that involve two synonyms for red, and I still wouldn’t give two fucks about your thoughts on the matter.

        Ban hammer. You’re done.

        December 16, 2013
      • DAMNIT. I wasn’t signed in. But that was me, if there was any doubt. It was me that said the Manson thing. Everybody can go home now.

        December 16, 2013
    • I think the main problem here might be the way I communicated all this, and I’m going to have to do a follow up post to this effect, but the issue you are talking about, the same issue Lawrence is talking about, is a separate issue to what I’m saying. I’m saying that we only accept body positivity from a certain body type, while refusing to allow to those most affected by body negative stereotypes– the very fat and the very thin– to have a voice. As society, we’re very concerned when women who aren’t fat are called fat, but we’re not all that concerned when fat women are called upon to apologize for their fatness.

      Like I said, that’s for a follow-up post.

      December 11, 2013
      • Thanks Jen, the independent thought was getting exhausting :p Nothing to disagree with here. The idea that anyone should apologize to anyone for their weight is disgusting…. Especially that they should apologize to strangers watching them on screen. It literally makes me cringe.

        December 11, 2013
    • Laina
      Laina

      You have absolutely no idea that Melissa McCarthy’s weight is “unhealthy”.

      Besides the fact that health is a social construct that many people will not acheive (I have hormone disorders that will mean I will never in my life be “healthy”, let alone mental stuff), YOU ARE NOT Melissa McCarthy and you do NOT know that she’s unhealthy.

      December 11, 2013
      • I’m not going to argue with you about whether obesity is healthy or not. See my above post for my perspective on that. Further, I didn’t say Melissa McCarthy was “unhealthy”, I said she is an unhealthy weight. However, I firmly believe whether that’s true or not doesn’t much matter. I cast no judgment against someone for not being in peak health. The issue isn’t with the fact that being obese is almost always less healthy than not being obese, it’s with people judging the health of others and using it as weapon against them. That’s what’s fucked up. The idea that, all other things being equal, it’s healthier for an individual not to be obese, though, I don’t consider particularly controversial.

        December 11, 2013
        • Cherry
          Cherry

          You should probably know that the current medical measure of “obese” is a pretty flawed one. It’s based primarily on BMI, a measurement that was created in the 1930s based on a sample of only white men. It has been shown multiple times to be inaccurate for many women, non-white people, and people with certain body shapes.
          Now some doctors have started using a BMI plus waist circumference measurement that is slightly more accurate, but still very flawed. The point here is that “obese” is a term that has a lot of problems, which means that the statement that “obese” people are less healthy also has those problems.

          December 11, 2013
      • I see this hit a real nerve for you, and I’m sorry about that. However, I would like to point out that you are the one making personal attacks here against both me and my husband who you know nothing about. So, I’m going to exit this particular conversion. Again, I am sorry my perspective is upsetting to you. I really am.

        December 11, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        You have no idea if her weight in unhealthy. Period. No matter how you say it, you do not know that. As for “the fact that being obese is almost always less healthy than not being obese”, citation, please. Preferably a non-biased study NOT paid for by a diet company. It is controversial because IT’S NOT TRUE.

        I wasn’t attacking you, I was being completely serious. I never want my medical health in the hands of somebody who believes things that are scientifically untrue and bases their care on that.

        December 11, 2013
      • Alexandra Aimee
        Alexandra Aimee

        Cherry, I will concede that. You are right about the term. *I* am of course NOT a doctor, and like I said, I don’t judge anyone based on them not being in peak health. It’s none of my damn business. I’m no picture of perfect health practices myself.

        My only point here was that it is a simple fact that for almost all people carrying a particularly high amount of body fat puts you at an increased risk for certain typed of diabetes, heart disease, lung issues, and joint problems. Having those elevated risks is not as healthy as not having them. Jen mentioned premature need for artificial joints above, and that didn’t seem to piss anyone off, but wouldn’t needing artificial joints before someone of a different weight be less “healthy”? That to me is just a fact, akin to the idea that having asthma is not as healthy as not having asthma.

        However, let me say again to be perfectly clear… Just like I wouldn’t judge someone for having asthma I certainly don’t think it’s right to judge someone for carrying a high percentage of body fat whether it makes them less healthy or not. I ascribe absolutely no moral, personal, or characteristic judgements to weight and I detest that our society does. I want very much to fight against that, but I also don’t want to be in denial about elevated risk of certain disease.

        This is actually exactly what I was getting at with Jennifer Lawrence being criticized for saying “male character with a vagina”… Sometimes when our society is really fucked up with regards to something it becomes very difficult to try to discuss is plainly, because the language we use to talk about it carries stigma. In this case the term “healthy” is carrying a values judgement. I want to use it in a way that divorces it from that, or find another word without the values judgement… I just don’t know how or what that is.

        December 11, 2013
      • Alexandra Aimee
        Alexandra Aimee

        Oh! And just because it was requested, here is a peer reviewed scientific study to support some of those elevated risks of mortality I am talking about. I can’t say it’s a perfect study. I didn’t do it myself. I don’t know the person who did. But, I do think it deserves consideration as a rational basis for my perspective. http://annals.org/article.aspx?articleid=1784291

        December 11, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        “My only point here was that it is a simple fact that for almost all people carrying a particularly high amount of body fat puts you at an increased risk for certain typed of diabetes, heart disease, lung issues, and joint problems.”

        Citation, please. That is not a fact that has been proven. Correlation is not causation.

        http://junkfoodscience.blogspot.ca/2006/11/obesity-paradox-1.html
        http://junkfoodscience.blogspot.ca/2006/12/obesity-paradox-2-how-can-it-be.html
        http://junkfoodscience.blogspot.ca/2007/01/obesity-paradox-3.html
        http://junkfoodscience.blogspot.ca/2007/03/obesity-paradox-4.html
        http://junkfoodscience.blogspot.ca/2007/10/obesity-paradox-13-take-heart.html
        http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1580453
        http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/74/5/579.full
        http://thisisthinprivilege.tumblr.com/post/34585445513/a-reminder-about-the-bmi
        http://www.fatnutritionist.com/index.php/articles-evidence/

        Also, my name is not Cherry and if you were using the french endearment, it’s Chere or cheri.

        December 11, 2013
      • Alexandra Aimee
        Alexandra Aimee

        You’re right Laina, your name isn’t Cherry. I was responding to Cherry, not you. Sorry for the confusion!

        December 11, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        It showed up in my email as a reply to me. I didn’t see Cherry’s reply. Apologies.

        December 11, 2013
        • Alexandra Aimee
          Alexandra Aimee

          I figured, no worries 🙂

          December 11, 2013
      • JD
        JD

        I’ll throw in my 2 cents into this melee and agree that BMI is flawed and it can’t be used as a diagnostic tool. One problem is that it does not account for different body types. For example, I have a very heavy skeleton compared with a lot of women–literally “big boned” and not as a euphemism. My hands and feet are huge compared with other people my size, my jaw is big and square, my bones are big and dense. So my BMI (and weight) are much higher than other women my height who may have technically the same body fat, or higher body fat since bone and muscle are denser than fat. So… bottom line, BMI can’t be used as a diagnostic tool, and I think most doctors recognize that.

        It does get used as a screening tool, which if it’s being used on your kids with similar body types to mine it can be really annoying because you get calls from the school inviting you to nutrition sessions, and you feel sort of neglectful not going but your kid really doesn’t have any health issues based on BMI.

        I mean… what? Er, I digress. Anyway, bottom line, I would never make any health decisions based on BMI. I would (try to) make health decisions if I was diagnosed with high blood pressure or other health issues and my weight/body fat could be a factor. But that’s a whole other ball game. There’s an entire industry devoted to keeping Americans eating and drinking as many calories as possible in the name of the almighty dollar. It’s wicked hard to fight, those people have spent millions studying how to influence our buying and eating habits. Online games do the same, and they do it really well, which is why people can’t stop playing. I don’t know about you guys, but as much as I respect my own willpower I’m not sure I have the hubris to bet on it against the multimillion (or multibillion!) dollar food industry.

        December 12, 2013
    • I always took this the same way as you explain here. I had no idea she was touted by her fandom as being a body positive advocate. I merely always thought she is very verbal about the frightening body standards Hollywood has, where a girl with a body like Jennifer Lawrence’s, that so many people would dream to have, is already considered to be too fat. That is scary! I never understood as that she sees herself as fat (although I’m sure it’s very hard to not think that when you’re told so so often), merely that Hollywood thinks her body is fat. Which is absolutely ridiculous because she is quite a bit thinner than the average person.
      Also, I don’t think we’re meant to think she doesn’t exercise at all. That is impossible with just her Hunger Games films alone. A lot of physical training goes into preparing for such films.
      About the trans people comments. I missed them and I’m sure they were offensive. I can only hope that when she is older she will realize how hurtful they were and will do her best to express herself better. (I know I said a lot of stupid shit when I was 23 O.o )

      December 12, 2013
  11. Janine
    Janine

    JTrout, you’ve done it again. Hit the nail on the head!

    December 11, 2013
  12. Well, this certainly makes me reconsider my previous defense for JLaw in the face of several people saying they were tired of her talking about this issue because you do make some valid points. It also reminds me of how someone last week said that Rebel Wilson would be so pretty if she lost a lot of weight, to which I replied, well, her face is certainly prettier than either of ours has ever been or will ever be–plus, she’s talented in a way that neither of us are.

    I was one of those ultra-skinny girls until my mid-thirties. I didn’t try to lose weight, I just couldn’t gain it. I was accused of having an eating disorder many times, had it suggested to me that I might have a drug problem, and told often by people that I’d look better if I put on some weight–people who would never go up to an overweight woman and tell her that she’d look better if she lost some way. I don’t have that problem anymore, and I’m inclined to add “Thank goodness!” and really mean it.

    So yeah, you’re right–it’s all subjective. Or objective. Whichever suits. Connie Willis, in her novel “The Bellwether” refers to it as aversion fads–shaming people for something that isn’t currently culturally acceptable–obesity, smoking, being too thin, being the wrong political party, etc.

    December 11, 2013
    • Sorry about the typos. Assume “way” is intended as “weight.”

      December 11, 2013
    • Laina
      Laina

      Rebel Wilson has a rocking hot bod, dude.

      December 11, 2013
      • I’m not going to argue that point because that wasn’t the point I was making. The point I was attempting to make was that there are always attractive and/or talented people, usually celebrities, that others are going to marginalize for some reason. Fashion models are jokingly referred to as vapid, yet it’s not possible that each one is. Rebel Wilson is an attractive, talented person–period. No other qualifications about her need be made in my opinion. I think JLaw means well, but I get the qualification intended by Jenny–that she isn’t really fat anyway so why is this even a dialogue which involves her? Interestingly, Queen Latifah made a statement today about never having been a size 2 and not being worried about it. This point made by her definitely qualifies as legitimate, in my opinion, because she’s also been a rep for Cover Girl and has a resume of success backing her, yet is clearly not the fashion industry’s typical ideal body type.

        December 12, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        “You have such a pretty face for someone your weight” or similiar is a pretty common insult disguised as a compliment for fat women.

        December 12, 2013
  13. I seem to remember, years ago, Kelly Osbourne making various similar comments about loving food and “Fuck off I’m not dieting”.

    IIRC she was NEVER held up the way JLaw is as a positive body model. All she got was a bunch of derision and how dare you as a fat woman not apologize for your very existence.

    So, there’s that.

    December 11, 2013
    • And she’s lost weight now. You know. For her health.

      December 11, 2013
      • I saw a comment from her once where she said she got waaay more grief for being fat than for doing drugs. That is just… Wow!

        December 12, 2013
      • Oh yeah, definitely for her health.

        Camyrn Manheim also lost weight. For her health. Also so she wouldn’t get expelled from NYU acting. (Seriously, read Wake Up, I’m Fat! if you haven’t; such a good book.) And it was sooooo healthy, when she started smoking and doing speed to lose that weight. They were so happy at NYU that she really took charge of her health, you know?

        *gags*

        Sorry, I started drowning in sarcasm.

        (It has been years since I read the book, so I may be misremembering details…but I do know that she was threatened with expulsion from drama school if she didn’t lose weight, and I do know that at some point she did speed for a summer to shed the pounds. Those bits stuck out very clearly in my head.)

        December 19, 2013
  14. Maeve
    Maeve

    So I really like your blog and think you’re awesome. And this isn’t a criticism, but what’s wrong with people “appropriating cultures”? I’ve been looking at the site you linked, Your Fave is Problematic and they keep giving out about things like Japanese/Chinese tattoos, dressing up as Cleopatra, etc. How is that offensive?

    Honestly asking!

    December 11, 2013
    • Laina
      Laina

      Japanese/Chinese tattoos – because they are not from that culture??? So they basically looked at something that was not theirs went, “OOH PRETTY” and got it TATTOOED ON THEIR BODIES.

      Cleopatra was a woman of colour. Most costumes are either a stereotype or, you know, brown/blackface.

      December 11, 2013
      • Maeve
        Maeve

        So finding something from another culture aesthetically pleasing is insensitive? I honestly don’t understand this point of view. Tribal tattoos etc, yeah I get why that’s a bad idea due to the fact that they have cultural meanings and are meant to tell a story, but a word? No. AND TYPING LIKE THIS doesn’t emphasise your point.

        To whomever said that when a white person does something from a different culture it’s called cute, but when a person from that culture does the same thing it’s called obscene or dangerous. That explains the anger. Thank you. I live in Ireland and couldn’t understand the issue with Miley twerking (apart from her pants not fitting) but if this is something that Black people get flack over, then I guess by that logic she should too. Or you know, no one should cos it’s just dancing. No one gets hurt!

        December 12, 2013
      • Maeve
        Maeve

        I’m on my phone and the reply function is only showing on some posts. I see now that it was you who posted the second point i responded to. No disrespect was meant by me saying whomever posted it. Apologies

        December 12, 2013
    • Lindsay
      Lindsay

      Ok, no I have a lot of issues with this. I realize I will probably get a lot of flack from this, but I also don’t understand the issues with cultural appropriation. If you are taking another culture’s thing and mocking it, or otherwise treating it disrespectfully, that is one thing. But how is it an issue to see/experience something from another person’s culture and want to incorporate it into your life? I don’t think just because you weren’t born Asian/Hispanic/Whatever means you’re not allowed to enjoy the things from their culture. That seems to put up more barriers to becoming an integrated culture than breaking them down.

      Also, Laina, Cleopatra was Greek.

      December 11, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        Also generally it is the people who are being appropriated from who SAY it’s a problem and they’re the ones who get to decide that. Like with this http://this-is-not-native.tumblr.com/ for example.

        December 11, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        You will note that the article you pointed to is dated 2009, making it pretty fair for people from before that time (and fairly probably after until that fact becomes better known culturally) for people to have the more common understanding that Cleopatra was Greek.

        Second, you will note my caveat of when someone has treated another culture with disrespect, which the images in the link you sent me have. But I have noticed a lot of people criticizing white people for displaying any interest or wanting to become more involved with other cultures (and subsequently adopting parts of their culture) as “appropriation,” as though skin color puts some kind of moratorium on experiencing and adopting other cultural practices/styles/etc. That is a barrier, and that is unfair. People should not be punished for wanting to expand their horizons.

        December 11, 2013
      • Lindsay, I think the real problem with people expanding their horizons by exploring another culture is that it has a real element of entitlement. “I should be allowed to come into your culture, whether you want me to or not! How dare you tell me there are spaces and traditions into which I am not assured a welcome! You won’t be welcome in my spaces and traditions, obviously, but you MUST make a place for me, despite the culture of my birth actively trying to erase the culture of your birth.”

        December 11, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        Also, there’s the thing where if a person outside the culture does it, it’s considered “hip” and “trendy” and “fashionable” but if the person whose culture it IS does it, it’s often considered “foreign” or “dangerous”. Like bindis or henna.

        December 11, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        Jenny, the issue is that I just can’t imagine anyone exploring other cultures with that attitude (if their interest is genuine), and from the other side, I don’t know of any culture that is so xenophobic that the entire culture says “no, we don’t want anyone but our own people to explore our culture.” What I find problematic is that the lines become way too easily blurred.

        For instance, I have a friend whose mother’s side of the family has lived in Hawai’i for several generations. Originally her family is from China – so they are not native Hawaiins. However, they love and embrace Hawaiin culture, and her middle name is a native Hawaiin name. She has expressed to me also that when she has kids she would like to give them native Hawaiin names, despite the fact that she herself has no blood ties to Hawai’i and despite the fact that she has grown up and lived in mainland America for all of her life. Is that cultural appropriation? For a while she was dating a guy who was half native Hawaiin, if she had gotten married and had kids with him, would that somehow made them having native Hawaiin names better, even though her reasons for giving them those names would have been exactly the same regardless of their blood line?

        Don’t get me wrong, I get very very angry with racist and culturally insensitive portrayals of other people’s cultures in the media (including things like fashion), but I think there is a significant crow-bar difference between someone who buys into someone else’s culture because it’s “cool,” and someone who has a genuine interest in another culture and wants to explore that culture and partially adopt certain parts of it as their own. I think when we start to call the latter, “cultural appropriation,” we are encouraging people to separate themselves based on their blood line or skin color rather than their personalities and interests.

        December 12, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @Lindsey, I really agree with all of what you’re saying. On the one hand, I’m against cultural appropriation when, like you said, it’s racially charged, insensitive, oppressive, and offensive. But I did some courses in Cultural Anthropology and I’ve taken foreign language classes, and I’ve seen how embracing another culture (and sharing in the cultural practices) can be so important.

        I feel like at a certain point, when we keep pointing fingers at everything that could be construed as cultural appropriation, then we start to promote barriers and we get even more disrespectful. Like, what if someone from that culture wants to share with you? Are you supposed to say no and turn them down? And doesn’t that seem close-minded and even more disrespectful, because you’re literally dismissing someone else’s culture? (And situations like this do come up. There was a model who went to India and was asked by Indian fashion designers to wear one of their dresses and she ended up on Your Fave Is Problematic for appropriating Indian clothing.)

        I feel like it’s all just too murky. I mean, some cases are cut and dry – like headdresses and religious/sacred symbols – but then there’s other stuff, like chopsticks. Which I’ve seen people call cultural appropriation and they technically are, I suppose. I just feel like better lines need to be drawn.

        December 12, 2013
      • Maria
        Maria

        @Lindsay You said “I don’t know of any culture that is so xenophobic that the entire culture says “no, we don’t want anyone but our own people to explore our culture.”

        For you to say that such behavior is unequivocally xenophobic is gross and ignorant. Some cultures who do do some form of this are usually engaging in a defensive maneuver in order to prevent a larger or stronger culture from both engulfing and erasing their own. It seems like you’re are assuming that all cultures exchange with each other on an equal basis, and if so that assumption is dangerous, and probably a large part of your ignorance on this matter.

        December 13, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        @Maria – I would appreciate you not assuming I have any more ignorance than you on the topic without you knowing anything about me beyond a single sentence. Perhaps you would prefer me use the term isolationist rather than xenophobic? Since you assumed I used to term xenophobic to convey something very negative? The point of the term was to say I have never met anyone from a culture who didn’t want to have anything to do with people from other cultures.

        I grew up in an area with a high level of diversity. I don’t claim to have interacted with people from every culture, that would be absolutely ridiculous, but I have had many friends from different cultural backgrounds, and one of my absolute favorite things is to learn about cultures that are different from mine. Every single one of my friends has been excited about sharing with me, not a single one of them has ever expressed or even hinted at discomfort to do so because I’m an “outsider.”

        And that’s the problem. I think it is really insulting to boil down an entire culture, a group of people into one single attitude towards something and say “these individuals from this culture don’t like others exploring their culture, so it is obvious the entire culture doesn’t want it, and you are a terrible person if you try to engage someone from that culture.” That is putting up a barrier. And it is shaming those individuals from that culture who disagree and have friends who are not limited to their cultural background and enjoy sharing their own culture and learning about other people’s cultures.

        Also Maria, your comments seem to indicate some kind of hostile take over. That simply doesn’t make any sense in the context of cultural exploration – and seems to really only make sense in terms of my earlier references regarding disrespectful treatment.

        @The Great Dragon – That’s exactly how I mean. Now not only is the model going to be more hesitant about wanting to explore other cultures because she was shamed for her interest, but now those designers are also being shamed in a way for allowing someone from outside their culture model their clothes. I hate the idea of putting these barriers between cultures when there are people from both cultures who don’t want to be open!

        On a side note, I am pretty disappointed at seeing the amount of hostility being displayed by a lot of people’s comments. One reason I usually enjoy this blog is because people are usually open and respectful when talking to each other, but it seems like this topic has really brought out a lot of the nasty in people. If anyone has taken any of my comments as being hostile, I apologize for that. I am merely trying to express my discomfort at a growing number of people judging other people’s cultural explorations in a world when racial and cultural barriers are such a huge problem, we shouldn’t be discouraging people from being more accepting and, god forbid, interested in a culture that is different from the one they were raised in.

        December 14, 2013
      • Maria
        Maria

        @Lindsay. I read what you wrote. That’s all that’s required to account for ignorance. Your background may only explain why someone is ignorant, or why someone shouldn’t be but ignorance is evidenced by what a person says and does. So I’m qualified to think you’re more ignorant than me because I read your comment (and vice versa). By the way, you said you “don’t know” of any cultures who feel this way, so saying that you’re ignorant is actually literally correct.

        I’m afraid that I’ll have to show my ignorance, but please point me toward xenophobia being used as a positive term. Otherwise, words have both meanings and connotations and you should probably be aware of them before you use them. Maybe instead of judging such protective measures as “isolationist” or “xenophobic” you should have just said that you’ve always encountered individuals who have wanted to share their culture.

        I was just commenting on that specific sentence, because to address the rest of your original comment would get too complex. But suffice it to say, calling out cultural appropriation even to an extent you find too spurious isn’t going to stop cultural sharing. The concern you have that it will seems spurious itself. Let’s be real, if wearing blackface for Halloween hasn’t gone out of style despite the many people who said it’s terrible, I don’t think cultural sharing will have a problem.

        Regardless, you’re right that individuals in one culture have different ways to interacting with cultures other than them. If people realized that an invitation to participate in someone’s culture was narrowed to that person/group, and should not be seen as a wider invitation from the culture itself, then I’m sure less people would get called out for appropriation

        December 14, 2013
      • The-Great-Dragon
        The-Great-Dragon

        @Lindsay, I have to say, I’m surprised by the hostility too. I feel like you brought up a lot of important points and questions. If we don’t examine what an end to cultural appropriation looks like or where cultural appropriation comes from or what makes cultural appropriation so offensive, or hell, what cultural appropriation actually is, I feel like we’re missing a huge part of the issue.

        I also feel like the definition currently being used is so general and unclear that there’s not really a separation between Cultural Exchange and Cultural Appropriation, meaning literally anything you do that involves other cultures can be seen as offensive and appropriative, even if it isn’t. Like you said, we’re building barriers, and this is especially sad and worrisome to me when I consider all the cultures out there that are dying out, and will soon be forgotten altogether, simply because there’s no cultural exchange happening.

        December 15, 2013
      • Tina
        Tina

        @Maria You are jumping down someones throat for saying that they like to learn about other cultures? She isn’t saying ‘I want to wear a Native American headdress to some college party and get wasted’ she is saying she wants to experience other cultures and learn about them. That is open-minded, not ignorant. And when you said “Some cultures who do do some form of this are usually engaging in a defensive maneuver in order to prevent a larger or stronger culture from both engulfing and erasing their own” really doesn’t make sense to me. When Britain colonized India, the English ruling class didn’t give a fuck about preserving native culture. They went out of their way to portray English culture as superior. That is the complete opposite to someone going into a country and trying to learn about someones culture in a respectful way.
        And, on a side note, the site that lists shitty things Jennifer Lawrence has said is ridiculous. I get things like using obviously offensive racial and homophobic words/ being violent/ deliberately insulting someones culture…. but Christina Aguilera wearing her hair in cornrows and Vanessa Hudgens using henna? That is NOT on the same stratosphere as Mel Gibson’s anti-semitism and abuse of his girlfriend.

        December 15, 2013
        • Maria
          Maria

          @Tina Oh Tina, you can not imagine how amused I was to see you take my comment completely out of context in order to argue against it’s premise. What an excellent example of a straw man. Why don’t you go back and read exactly what I had a problem with. I quoted exactly which of Lindsay’s words I take umbrage with. And when you do, please explain to me what part of the assumption Lindsay made, that cultures which don’t allow others to partake are xenophobic or her follow-up, isolationist, indicated a willingness to learn and experience about other’s cultures in a “respectful” way.

          You’ll also have to explain what your example about India and Britain had to do with the quote you didn’t understand. Are you saying that India engaged in defensive maneuvers in order to keep Britain out of its culture, and that Britain wasn’t larger or stronger as a culture? What part of your example fit anything about my quote? I never mentioned respect, primarily because when the power differential is large, intent is irrelevant. What are trying to say here is confusing?

          However, you’re actually wrong in certain respects. Yes, Britain heavily destroyed or tried to destroy parts of India’s culture. But there were definitely parts of India’s culture Britain wanted to protect, for instance it’s habit of drinking tea. What do you think the East India Co. was for? I’m sure Britain had a lot of respect for India’s high quality tea. Now tea is entrenched in English culture, as if it is inherently British, in the west, with no hint as to it’s actual origins. So thank you for giving an example of erasure.

          You’ll also have to clarify where you got the idea that everything on that site was on the same stratosphere. The site is a listing of problematic things; where does it say all things are equally problematic? However, considering that black children can get suspended from schools for “fad” hairstyles, such as corn-rows and black men and women are not allowed to wear “unprofessional” hairstyles, such as corn-rows, and celebrities who aren’t part of these cultures wearing these hairstyle to sell an image of coolness or edginess actually contribute to the view that these hairstyle are in fact “faddish” or “unprofessional,” you’ll have to excuse me if I find it harmful regardless.

          December 16, 2013
      • Tina
        Tina

        @Maria I won’t begin my post in the same condescending way that you began yours, but I generally find people who write things like that to be incredibly insecure in their own argument, relying on patronizing other people in order to make themselves feel intellectually superior.
        I have no idea how I took what you said out of context. I understand that you quoted Lindsay earlier in your post, but I had issue with the next comment you made. Putting aside the fact that you skipped over most of what Lindsay said to seize on her comment that cultures she has encountered are not xenophobic enough not allow outsiders in (which is, by the way, the definition of xenophobia) in order to say how ignorant you think she is.
        I used the Britain/ India example because you said that some cultures become defensive due to the threat of being destroyed by a stronger culture (which I took to mean an invading culture with stronger armies). Britain invaded India and attempted to erase their culture. They were not trying to be a part of the Indian culture. Yes, Britain stole a lot of India’s resources, including tea. Are you saying that the problem with that is that Britain was trying to copy India’s cultural practice of drinking tea and you find that offensive rather than that Britain, you know, invaded a country, enslaved the people and stole their resources? Also I think most people know that tea is not native to Britain. And in answer to your question: no, Indian people don’t generally engage in ways to keep others out of their culture despite having had it threatened… isn’t that an example against what you were saying?
        What do you want me to clarify? That Mel Gibson’s atrocious behavior- denying the holocaust, saying racist things, saying homophobic things and physically and emotionally abusing his girlfriend- gets a grand total of eight lines on that site whereas Vanessa Hudgens wearing a bindi gets four huge pictures. And other ridiculous entries too: like JLaw repeated an insult that Zach Galifinakas told her to say to him and the site accusing Marina Diamandis of using black face (she wasn’t). Am I supposed to take a site like that seriously?
        Finally, don’t you think you should direct your anger about black children getting suspended from school and people getting in trouble at work for wearing corn rows at the bigots in higher powers? Shouldn’t we be saying that wearing your hair in cornrows (or however the hell you choose to wear your hair) is completely acceptable? Do you have a problem with black people wearing their hair straight?
        It’s also patronizing of you assume that people who wear their hair in corn rows are trying to look cool and edgy. I would think that they did so because they like the style.

        December 16, 2013
        • Maria
          Maria

          @Tina LMAO. OMG @ you saying you’re not going to be condescending but then informing me that I was and that condescension is the purview of the insecure, just so I know. But you’re not going to be condescending right? LOLOLOL. Did you read what you wrote? Don’t worry, I don’t actually care if you’re condescending or not or if you think I am; you don’t need to engage in paraleipsis with me.

          You expressed outrage that I “jumped” on someone just trying to be open with other cultures when what I actually called her ignorant for had nothing to do with openness, since it was literally judging something Lindsay had not engaged in. I’m not sure why you think every part of a person’s comment must all be addressed to provide validity to any response, but calling her ignorant for the thing she said which was actually ignorant is usually what one does. So yes, pretending that I “jumped” on her for wanting to be open, instead of her close-minded statement, is a deliberate strawman and out of context. But you and Lindsay seem to believe that a good intent overall means any bad consequences should be ignored in light of that intent. Good luck with that.

          It looks like to me you mistook the logical implications of my statement. If I say A may be doing C because of B doing D, that doesn’t mean I said if B does D, A does C. That’s not a logical conclusion. A counter-example would be that A was doing C but B wasn’t doing D. Your Britain/India example doesn’t fit. Nowhere did I say cultures always engage in defensive manuevers when there is an invasion. Nor did I ever say invasion itself was the catalyst.

          Again with the weird assumptions. If I say something is offensive, that doesn’t mean I think something else isn’t. They can be offensive at the same time, just for different reasons. I for one would love to know your thought processes, because they haven’t followed logical implications here, but seem to make some interesting assumptions apropos of nothing. And no, I don’t think most people in the West understand where most of their products come from, especially ones which they feel are entrenched in their cultures.

          Why don’t you clarify why you think those things are supposed to have the same weight according to the website? Why don’t you start with that? It’s a user generated site, so the users sent in the materials. Did you read the FAQ to get a sense of what’s happening or? Yes, being potentially wrong about something means the rest of site has to be discounted, yes, absolutely, that’s completely logical. Maybe you can try instead to consider the sources and critically think for like a second.

          I just explained to you why those people wearing their hair that way contributes to the discrimination, so I’ll just say that I feel quite comfortable expressing anger toward anyone who perpetuates such systemic inequalities from their position of privilege and their ignorance in doing so. What does black people wearing their hair straight have to do with anything (this is yet another example of you making weird jumps that don’t actually have any logic behind them)? If you are trying to say that black people wearing their hair straight is them “stealing” from white culture, let’s let this conversation lay because you simply don’t know enough to engage here. You already think it’s patronizing to assume artists whose goal is to sell an image don’t make that image they’ve never don’t before and never will do again, out of sincerity, but more likely because their label execs want them to capitalize on a certain market share, and that this has been done time imemorial with white pop artists specifically with black culture, so I just don’t think you know enough critical race theory or pop culture for us to engage on the same level.

          December 16, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        @Maria – I find it really interesting that you are so “amused” at other people’s supposed strawman arguments when that is exactly what you did with my post. I raised an issue about the blurred lines between cultural exploration and cultural appropriation, and you jumped on the fact that I used the term “xenophobic” and “isolationist.” What’s really strange is that the whole point of what I was saying is that I have yet to encounter a culture that is like that, so why are you attacking me for being negative about something that I am saying I have yet to encounter?

        Also I don’t buy into your comment on how the spurious use of cultural appropriation won’t stop cultural sharing. Well, let me clarify, you’re right it won’t stop cultural sharing, but it can still be very damaging to it. It is incredibly different from instances of blackface or my aforementioned inappropriate and disrespectful uses of cultural aspects. The former obviously don’t really care about being respectful, otherwise they would take a closer look at what they were doing – and thus they probably won’t really care about being called out for being disrespectful, hence the behavior does not significantly decrease societally.

        On the other hand if someone has tried to approach cultural exchange with respect, and is subsequently called out for cultural appropriation (an inherently negative thing), that is far more likely to be hurtful to the person, and make them far less likely to continue to explore that culture because people don’t like being shamed when they are trying to be respectful.

        Lastly I genuinely don’t understand your comment about how an invitation from someone in a culture isn’t a broader invitation from the culture itself? Since cultures aren’t borg hive-minds, how does one get an invitation to engage in cultural exploration from anyone but individuals of that culture? Sorry, I am not trying to be snarky with that, I just honestly don’t understand the point you are trying to make there.

        December 16, 2013
        • Maria
          Maria

          @Lindsay No Lindsay that’s not what a straw man is. I didn’t invent something you argued or said. I literally quoted the part of your statement I had an issue with and addressed that. Just because I originally didn’t engage with the rest of post doesn’t make what I did engage with a straw man. Because again, I was talking about something you actually said and the actual implications of it. What I really wonder is if you realize that you are saying that you can be negative (so you admit you’re being negative now?) about things you personally haven’t engaged with, because if you haven’t engaged or learned about them, the harm is non-existent? You also implied with that statement that if you did happen to learn about such a culture doing such a thing, that you would presumptively judge it as either xenophobic or isolationist. So yes, you being negative about something you have yet to encounter is the problem. That’s what I’m hearing. That’s what I think is ignorant. I’m not really going to continue with that part of your statement anymore, because you clearly think there’s nothing wrong with what you said, so there’s not point in continuing a conversation in which we are so far apart.

          First of all, I don’t know whether you are ignoring that usually the main criticizers of cultural appropriation are the people of the culture being appropriated itself intentionally or not. But that’s actually really important. So when you talk about people engaging in “cultural sharing” being sad about others actually in the culture saying that they weren’t actually sharing after all, I have to point out that your premise is that their cultural “sharing” was merely mistaken as appropriation by the people who would actually know how it feels. This is what I find spurious. That the people whose culture is being appropriated would be reaching. So since, to my view, the shame is for cultural appropriation, I think I don’t really care that the overstepping person feels sad now that they’ve overstepped. Moreover, even when someone from a culture invites engagement, it’s often not the original acceptance that invites appropriation accusations, it’s the ignorance that accompanies it. Again, something I’m okay with people being called on. For instance, the sari you mention some actress was wearing in India is not going to have the same implications in India, where the culture the actress was in was the majority than in the West, where it definitively is not. The fact that the actress didn’t consider the difference is part of cultural appropriation.

          Also, if someone finds being criticized a reason not to engage anymore at all, instead of learning where they went wrong and trying to do so without overstepping, especially with an underprivileged culture, then they didn’t really get how the culture interacts with the wider world in the first place, since those underprivileged cultures also get criticized for engagement in their own culture, and somehow have to soldier on. I feel like you’re really trying to defend people who are normally ignorant and the result is less that sharing occurs but that those ignorant people don’t have to critically think before they act. Furthermore, I think it’s telling that plenty of underprivileged cultures share with each other and don’t get called out for appropriation. Why don’t you think about why they can seem to share without appropriation instead of worrying that calling out the appropriation of the privilege will somehow short-circuit such sharing.

          Basically if someone form India wants you to wear a sari at their wedding, for instance, that’s not an invitation to wear a sari at anyone else’s wedding or event, including your own. If they want you to do it again, they’ll ask.

          December 16, 2013
      • Tina
        Tina

        @Marie Nope. I did not say ‘just so you know’ at all- that is an outright lie. I said that in my opinion you speak to people in a condescending way and in my experience people who do that generally try and put people down because they are insecure in their argument. I didn’t begin by saying ‘oh Maria, you are so ignorant but I’m going to reply to you because I find you sooo amusing’. THAT would be condescending and rude and that is basically what you said to me. If you can’t see the difference in tone than you are choosing not to see it. I would care if I was condescending to you because I try to treat people with respect even if they seem completely unable to do the same.
        You did jump down someone’s throat. It’s a British colloquialism, sorry if you’ve never heard it before. I don’t think you have to address all of what she said, but I found it odd that her whole post was about her wanting to learn about other cultures and you seized on the fact that she used the word xenophobic. For the record, xenophobia literally means fear of outsiders so if a culture did not want to engage with outsiders than the use of that word is correct. It is, again, a total lie that I said you jumped on her for wanting to be open- I said you ignored her saying that and attacked a word she used. I didn’t say you can do anything you want as long as you have good intentions, nor do I think that. But I would be more forgiving of people who caused offence if they were not being deliberately malicious than of someone who was trying to inflict pain on another person.
        Its very convenient that, rather than responding to a direct point you simply say ‘you mistook the logical implications of my statement’ (you say it several times per post). This is what you said:
        “ Now tea is entrenched in English culture, as if it is inherently British, in the west, with no hint as to it’s actual origins. So thank you for giving an example of erasure.”
        Due to the use of the word ‘erasure’ I took this to mean that you saw Britain adopting the cultural practice of drinking tea as a negative thing. Did you not mean that? I went on to say that I don’t think it is wrong to adopt a cultural practice. I do think it is wrong to invade a country and oppress its people. I’m not saying that you don’t also think its wrong but I find it odd that you find adopting the cultural practice of drinking tea offensive and that was the first thing you commented on. And ‘most people’?! Are you even from Britain? The history of the British Empire is one of the most taught subjects in secondary school. That is an incredible weird and unfounded assumption on your part.
        I think that, if I had a site dedicated to saying shit that celebrities have said or done, the Mel Gibson page would be several pages long. They also miss out a lot more disgusting things that he has said and done. I think there is a clear lack of outrage over the comments he made on that site. My other issue with the site is that a few of the things they mention are just not offensive at all. And that is me ‘considering the sources and critically think for like a second.”
        I know you said that it contributes to discrimination. I disagree with that- I don’t think it is your place to pass judgement on how anybody wears their hair, just like I don’t think it is an employers place to pass judgement on how an employee wears their hair. Do you think it is just celebrities who shouldn’t wear their hair in corn rows?
        You talk about weird assumptions: if I said I think people should wear their hair however they like, than is it no way logical that I would think black people should not be able to wear their hair straight (for the record, white people aren’t the only race to have naturally straight hair). You are the one passing judgement on people for how they wear their hair and I wanted to know if this judgement extended to other races and cultures. Again, I think employers and teachers should be called out for calling certain hairstyle offensive. I do not think celebrities should be called out for wearing their hair a certain way. You called me a straw man- you have repeatedly seized on small things I have said rather than responding to the point as a whole.
        As for your final comment: you are extremely arrogant and closed minded. I have not been to university or taken race theory- I can in no way afford to do so, I have been in work full time since the age of 16 and supported myself and my child. It’s great if you can afford further education- I think education is a wonderful thing and am working hard so that my daughter has the opportunity some day- but please do not look down on other people who do not have the same privileges and opportunities as you. It does not make my opinion invalid or my arguments ill thought out. If you do not want to debate with people who are less educated than you, nobody is holding a gun to your head and I would rather that you didn’t respond than to constantly call me stupid and uneducated throughout your post.

        December 17, 2013
        • Maria
          Maria

          @Tina, Yes Tina I was characterizing what you said. You see how I didn’t quote you. Because I didn’t think it was a quote. But it was an accurate characterization. None of that was necessary for your argument, so you said it for what reason? To be condescending. How is essentially saying you were going to read a certain perspective into my words again apropos of nothing but your assumptions not condescending? I feel like you’re going to move the goalpost here, so I’ll presumptively say, whatever. Your inability to take my words on their face value because of whatever tone you’ve assigned them is your problem and yours alone. I’m also beginning to love how you don’t see your passive-aggressiveness as rude either. All your openings are paraleipsis (I’m not going to be condescending or rude, but let me say something passive-aggressive, which totally isn’t rude or condescending), and if you don’t see it, again your issue. I do in fact find it hilarious that you engaging in the type of tone you seem to hate. But that aside, please read about the tone argument and why it’s a fallacy.

          As a side note and irony, jumped on is an American colloquialism that must have spread to Britain, not a British one, or at least so says the Cambridge dictionary of American idioms.

          Yes, you saying it’s “interesting” that I didn’t take into consideration or address the rest of her comment suggests that you think it would have be natural and therefore right to take into consideration or address the rest of her comment. That’s the implication of that statement. Xenophobia is an irrational and unreasoned fear of the foreign. I was saying that it’s not always irrational or unreasoned nor even necessarily a phobia, i.e. protective measures against the actual consequences of the actual actions of a foreign source. It also has a negative connotation, that I felt was unwarranted, based on the stated ignorance.

          “It is, again, a total lie that I said you jumped on her for wanting to be open”
          Your first comment: “You are jumping down someones throat for saying that they like to learn about other cultures?”

          “I didn’t say you can do anything you want as long as you have good intentions, nor do I think that.” But in this case, you think I should have not commented as I did on what I still think is Lindsay’s ignorant use of xenophobic because the rest of her comment was about something good like openness. You know, I can believe in your real life you do have more nuance than you’ve stated here. But you haven’t exhibited that nuance here. Just because it wouldn’t be worth it to you, doesn’t mean it’s not worth it to me. I honestly don’t care how forgiving you would be and I think you are saying I should adopt your philosophy of forgiveness or whatever. So I think we’re done here, because I don’t see the need.

          I responded to your direct point. You asked how India/Britain wasn’t a counterpoint. I explained how it wasn’t a counterpoint and that you didn’t understand how the logic of my statement worked. Then I gave you an example of the form of a counterpoint.

          So perhaps you will find things less “interesting” and “odd” if you try not to make your personal assumptions, that one will comment on everything one finds wrong, universal and comment on that basis. I do think it’s wrong to adopt a cultural practice by exploiting another culture. I also think it’s wrong to oppress them. Since we’re talking about cultural appropriation, that’s what I commented on. Considering that we’re talking about cultural appropriation, I did in fact assume that “oppression is wrong” was implied since that’s what most appropriation is premised on. Here’s what I find interesting; you seem to think something being taught means a) something was learned, b) it was taught honestly, c) it was taught extensively or with nuance and d) since it was taught, it provided the overall conclusion regardless of whatever other cultural influences might exist. I don’t think any of those things are true, and looking at my experiences with the result of such education, I’ll stick with what I think about what people know.

          You are moving the goalposts with that site, and you are doing so with a fundamental misunderstanding of the site. Again, did you look at the FAQ? How exactly would people log their outrage on tumblr? Did you read all the notes to see what outrage does exist? Do you understand how user generated content affects how the content is presented? I’ll ask again, why do you think everything is meant to be equally problematic, or are you not going to address your original objection? You can think anything is wrong, what does wrongness have to do with the correct parts of the site? Why are you so willing to ignore everything because of what you believe are some wrong things? Jenny addressed the rest of your point.

          I’ve talked extensively in other comments about how privilege and oppression are fundamental in understanding cultural appropriation. You can read those. My point was that it was weird of you to assume that I would need to comment on black people having straight hair as if it has anything to do with white people wearing the cultural hairstyles of black people. Because as you admit straight hair is not culturally white. So that was an assumption you made, not me. If don’t believe in cultural appropriation and how it can be perpetuated through the unintentional and ignorant actions of the privileged, and that they should be made aware or called out on it, then we’re done here too.

          Yes, I responded to things you have actually said. Again, it is your philosophy that the miniscule nature of something means that it shouldn’t be addressed, not mine. You have responded to things I haven’t said, but that you’ve assumed apropos of nothing that I meant. And then you argue against those. So yes, it is you who is arguing against straw men. Here’s yet another series of assumptions you’ve made: that I have gone to college, that I learned critical race theory there, that I’m saying you need to go to college to learn critical race theory, that being uneducated and not having the background necessary to converse with someone about a topic means you’re stupid. I haven’t said a single one of those. You are absolutely right that formal education is a privilege and an opportunity and that extensive education into certain topics can only be gotten with specific passes. It’s true that I don’t know whether you have public library around or the means to get there. It’s certainly true that I wouldn’t begrudge you using your free time for doing whatever you want, even if that means that you don’t try to figure out what cultural appropriation means. It does mean that when you don’t know what you’re talking about but are assuming that whatever you think has the same validity as what I think, when I have learned about it, that you are dead wrong. You keep saying that you don’t think appropriation is harmful, I’m going to say you’re wrong. That saying that isn’t valid. Just as me jumping into a conversation about the Chinese economy and expressing my uninformed opinion isn’t going to be as valid as someone who understands anything about China and economy. You don’t know anything about cultural appropriation and you haven’t read about or have ignored it. So there’s no point in discussing whether a privileged culture engaging with an underprivileged culture is harmful to that underprivileged culture with you. You have nothing with any weight to back your demurrals, besides that you don’t think it’s harmful.

          Regardless, I know for a fact that you have some access to the internet, so if you ever want to get educated you can try google, with whatever internet access you have.

          December 17, 2013
      • Just a note on that Tumblr and the objections that they didn’t cover more on Mel Gibson: they have a submission button. If you’ve got links to add and stuff, they’ll add them. But Mel Gibson saying horrible shit doesn’t erase horrible shit other celebrities have said, or that Tumblr not listing all the horrible shit Mel Gibson has said/done doesn’t mean they’re not justified in pointing out things about other celebs. They also haven’t included every single problematic thing each of these celebs have said. See also: their Amanda Palmer post.

        Also, If someone actually cataloged all the problematic shit Mel has done/said, it would have to have its own tumblr. Possibly it’s own internet.

        December 17, 2013
      • Tina
        Tina

        @Jenny I did think it was someones blog, so I was wrong on that part. I don’t have an objection with people being called out for saying or doing offensive things. My issues were:
        1. That some of the things people said or did were not offensive. On the section about Marina I thought the Native American headpiece was offensive (whether intended or not) but Marina did not use black face in her music video and I think that implication is unfair.
        2. The Mel Gibson thing. I hate the man and was disappointed that there appeared to be a very small, general article about the evil things he has said. I did think originally that one person was blogging each entry and was annoyed they gave him so little attention (I get now that it is not just one person and people focus on the celebrities they are more interested in). He is one of the few celebrities I have a genuine loathing for. The Passion of Christ was not simply anti-semitic- Gibson was actively trying to go against the Popes repudiation that Jews were responsible for the death of Christ and stir up trouble in places where there is violent anti-semitism (like in Egypt/ Syria). And he has made comments that imply he is a holocaust denier (which isn’t in the article).

        December 17, 2013
      • Tina
        Tina

        @Jenny (forgot to say in my first comment- before I threw myself into a debate- that I really like your article and your blog. And thought the Girlfriend was excellent)

        December 17, 2013
      • tina
        tina

        @Maria @Maria No, you were changing what I said to make it sound condescending. I pointed out that you were being condescending because you seem to adopt an unpleasant, superior tone when you speak to people and I found it offensive.

        Whatever tone I’ve assigned to you?! You’ve said how ignorant I am, how much my argument amuses you, how hilarious you find anything I say, how you’re on a superior level to me. I have responded that that is an arrogant thing for you to say. I haven’t called you stupid nor would I- firstly because I don’t think you are stupid at all and secondly because, if I actually thought that you were of low intelligence, I wouldn’t be cruel enough to say so and certainly wouldn’t see you as inferior.
        I said ‘jumped down her throat’. If that’s an American colloquialism….ok we use it in Britain too and the way you were quoting it made it appear as if you didn’t understand what I was saying.
        I do think it’s natural to look at a comment as a whole and not comment on one word. That might be a difference of opinion. I see your point about ‘phobia’ but it is clear that Lindsay was saying it to be offensive.
        I didn’t realize that I had said that and I sincerely apologize. My initial comment was hastily written. I’m not claiming to have nuance here or in real life. I saw Lindays comment and I saw your response and thought that it was harsh and missing the point of what she said.
        ‘I honestly don’t care how forgiving you would be and I think you’re saying I should adopt your philosophy of forgiveness’. It is quite frustrating when you make all the assumptions you want about what I say and have said repeatedly that I shouldn’t do the same to you. Don’t forgive people- I’m not asking you to. I think a lot of people have said/ done/ believed things they are ashamed of in the past, myself included. And please stop saying ‘we’re done’. If you don’t want to respond to a point I made then don’t.

        The India/ Britain thing was an example I brought up after you said a culture can become defensive when a stronger culture tries to move in on it. I said the English elites didn’t try to move in on Indian culture, they tried to push their own as superior. I don’t really understand the logic of your initial statement. If you want to explain it than go ahead.
        I do find it interesting that you put quotation marks around words that you also use in your post. I agree it is wrong to adopt a cultural practice by exploiting another culture and have said that. No, I didn’t assume a/ b/ c/ d, you are changing the goalposts. You said you thought most people wouldn’t know where tea was from. I said that Britain’s occupation of India is taught a lot in secondary school so I’d imagine most people would know that tea was not native to Britain.
        I have stated several times what my problem with the site is. I didn’t say that each quote had to be equally problematic. My original objection was how small Mel Gibsons article was in comparison to someone like Vanessa Hudgens- why is that hard to understand? I thought that the person who makes/ monitors the site should go into more detail about what he said rather than just ‘he made a very anti-semitic movie’ and include other offensive quotes he has said (like denying the holocaust). I’m not ignoring everything- ,some things celebrities have said are offensive, but some things are not.
        I didn’t ever say straight hair is not culturally white. You were the one who used those words.
        This whole thing began because you jumped on ONE word someone used, clearly not meaning to be offensive. You find other peoples posts so hilarious- how do you not see that you do exactly the same thing?
        As for your final comment: I did NOT say cultural appropriation is ok. I said that people should be able to wear their hair how they like. I don’t think it’s ok to wear a native American headdress or a bindi or a sari because they have religious significance. Wearing your hair in corn-rows does not have any religious or spiritual significance. It is a hair style and, in my opinion, something people should not suffer prejudice because of. I would also say the same about henna tattoos (although I get certain symbols have religious significance. You are taking offense at my assuming you went to college (which I said is a wonderful thing). I was not expressing offense that I thought you went to college, I was expressing offense at you calling me ignorant and saying that I was beneath you and not worthy of you debating with. If you have learned about racial theory online or in the library that’s great that you have the time to do that (and I mean that completely sincerely). And you may not have used the word stupid, but you have certainly implied it and called me ignorant, unable to understand what you are saying, ‘if you just think for a second’, and that we were not on the same level. With regards to cultural approbation, I have enough knowledge to form an opinion of what is offensive and what is not. I think each thing should be looked at in its proper context.
        Thank you for your advice but I don’t really have the time or the academic capacity- being dyslexic (and a pretty crap reader) and having a young child- I could probably get through an essay a month. Maybe sometime in the future.

        December 17, 2013
      • Tina
        Tina

        @Maria sorry typo: *It was clear that Tina was NOT saying it to be offensive

        December 17, 2013
      • Tina
        Tina

        @Maria Also I feel my comment, that I am against cultural approbation is incorrect. I am first and foremost for freedom of expression but still don’t like it when people use things that are sacred to other groups as trinkets or fashion accessories. I don’t like religion personally but still feel that it is disrespectful to mock someones beliefs (which I don’t think is the intention of celebrities but they still shouldn’t go there). Things like adopting food, drink, hair styles etc. from other cultures, I don’t find offensive.

        December 17, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        I agree with these, and many of the instances I have seen with regard to Native Americans, because they are culturally disrespectful. My problem is how the term seems to have been taken to a whole new level in which people seem to be discouraged from exploring and incorporating other people’s cultures into their lives because of their skin color.

        December 11, 2013
    • Maria
      Maria

      When a person of a oppressor culture enjoys aspects of an oppressed culture, they are usually reinforcing the very issues which prevent a oppressed culture from gaining any power within the system, namely they participate in reduction of the cultural complexities of an oppressed culture to present themselves as something “different” to the oppressor culture. This also is exponentially made worse when the oppressed culture is expected to assimilate in order to have validity.

      Intent is irrelevant here as the engagement occurs on a social level. The main issue here is power. The more systemic, and the bigger the gap in power, the more of an appropriative act it is to engage with a culture that is not yours selectively. I personally think appropriative acts are in fact on a range.

      Appropriation is actually quite different when the cultures are both oppressed within the main society. Then it is the meaning of symbols enjoyed and their intent in engaging them that matter more. As it is, black and latino communities, especially in poorer ones, often engage in cultural sharing, but that doesn’t mean that they cannot appropriate each other when the cultural symbols taken have more significant values.

      December 13, 2013
  15. Cherry
    Cherry

    I like that in this post you aren’t after her as much as the people who make her out to be a “fat” body-positive role model.
    I like the comments she makes about food, but that’s because she reminds me of me, only with more boobs. I like them because she’s a skinny person who likes food and eats a ton, which I am, and doesn’t pretend that she only eats salads. It’s something you rarely see outside of Gilmore Girls.
    I get that people like me are the “lucky ones,” but that doesn’t mean we don’t get shat on for it too. People act like skinny people who eat don’t exist. Everyone always assumes you’re secretly dieting or just lying to make yourself look better or make them feel bad.
    Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying she’s the best body-positive role model or defending the people who think that. I’m just offering a perspective. (and, hopefully not offending anyone.)

    December 11, 2013
    • Thea
      Thea

      CHERRY, Thank you so much for bringing the conversation back to Jennifer Lawrence. All the intellectual stuff, however riveting and important, was beyond my abilities. I might have accidentally fell asleep in the exhaustion of trying to follow who was arguing what point.

      Thank Jenny for being awesome, sorry so many people forgot this was YOUR blog, and the reason class was called to session on this occasion.

      December 28, 2013
  16. Laina
    Laina

    Ha, I was about to link to this when I saw the post in my inbox XD http://celebreceipts.tumblr.com/tagged/jennifer-lawrence

    I literally just saw this too http://wtfplus.tumblr.com/post/69733392118/omg-celeb-gossip

    So yeah, a thin girl dressed up as a fat stereotype for Halloween. What a good role model that is!!

    On a slightly separate note, I think there are a fair few people in this argument that should be reminded that a.) you cannot know somebody’s health by LOOKING at them b.) it’s none of your business anyways c.) that no one is obligated to BE healthy and d.) that when you are the norm (het, cis, male, thin, white) you have privilege over people who are not that norm. It has nothing to do with anything you did (you did not “earn” your privilege) and it doesn’t mean that your life is perfect.

    December 11, 2013
  17. Alison
    Alison

    I’ve always gotten the impression that she was like, “This is my normal. Deal with it.” It’s not her fault that she can get away with saying these things and fatter people can’t. I don’t think she set out to be some kind of fat spokesperson or anything, she’s just vocally criticizing the Hollywood ideal, which is a good thing.

    December 11, 2013
  18. J
    J

    I think some of the confusion may be because this was one of the points you made in your post – “I’m not making this post to attack Jennifer Lawrence. I’m making this post to attack the rabid fandom that has grown around her.” But the title of the post was – “Jennifer Lawrence body shames you more than you might have realized.” The title suggests JL is going to be the focus of the ‘attack’ rather than the rabid fan girls/boys.

    December 12, 2013
  19. You know, technically I agree with you (I am a fatty too), but I do think that what she says about her body is mostly about women in the industry and people are giving way too much meaning to her words, like ‘person in real life’, to me just means that many women in the industry are way too thin and they starve them to look like that and not that too thin or fatter than her women are not women. I recently checked the weight of some of the main actors on The Vampire Diaries – and they are all underweight, even the guys!
    And as far as some of the shitty things she says – I think it’s really easy to say things like that when you just don’t know or you think you are blabbing or doing something innocent (and not offensive), but you never know what meaning will people put into your words or actions. It’s happened to me, but I imagine it’s even worse when you are famous, and especially a likeable personality because people are always looking at you to screw up. And even if she meant these things to sound like person on that website interpreted them, everyone has flaws!

    December 12, 2013
    • I meant not people, sorry.*

      December 12, 2013
  20. Andrea
    Andrea

    Okay, here’s a thought that’s totally unrelated to JLaw. I think we should stop focusing on the “Don’t judge someone for their weight, you have no idea what their health is” angle. By focusing on this angle, are we implicitly suggesting that it’s okay to judge someone for their weight once we find out they ARE unhealthy? (This is mostly a rhetorical question, because I don’t think the citizens of Trout Nation are down with making people feel shame, generally speaking.)

    I’m a 25 year old woman, I’m 5’4″, and I weigh more than 200 pounds. I’m not overweight because of a medical condition, I’m overweight because I regularly eat Doritos for dinner and I don’t really exercise. I see my doctor every month for an Adderall prescription, so I get regular checks on my blood pressure, cholesterol, and EKG, which are all fine, but my blood sugar is a little high. I am worried about my health — because of my weight, and because of the unhealthy habits that led to my weight gain. And I still don’t want people to judge me.

    I want people to stop fat shaming not because we don’t know what their particular health situation is, but because I want to stop hating myself. I want to stop feeling like I don’t deserve to tell a boy I like him because he would never find me attractive. I want to find clothes that fit me in stores. I want to fit into airplane seats. I want to post photos on Facebook without worrying people will comment on how much weight I’ve gained. I want to stop feeling uncomfortable around people.

    I have a complicated relationship with food that I don’t have the faintest idea how to address. I’m terrified I’m going to get diabetes, but there is no easy solution to change the habits of a lifetime. I don’t know if I’ll ever find the strength to do it. It has nothing to do with knowledge or willpower or medical help. But whether I do or not, my body is none of anyone’s goddamn business. I have the right to be unhealthy AND happy AND shame free. And I hope that someday the rest of the world will come around to this way of thinking.

    December 12, 2013
    • This! So much! I so agree with you!!!

      December 12, 2013
    • Laina
      Laina

      If it makes you feel better, 95% of weight loss diets fail. And that includes the “eat “healhy” and excercise” ones. And there are a lot of studies that are showing that a lot of the stuff people believe about obesity is downright lies. Being fat can help you have a better chance at surviving heart attacks, changes your risk of osteoprorosis which I am not spelling correctly but it’s morning so meh, and that correlation is NOT causation. Family history is a better indicator on stuff like that than how much gravitational pull anchors you to the ground 😛

      December 12, 2013
    • Oh, btw, Thank you! That’s exactly how I feel and what I want and I am about your weight and your height.

      December 12, 2013
  21. ally
    ally

    Her comments about food are intended for the younger teenage audience. Its ok to eat. Do not starve yourself to be thin. Jen obviously works out and is in fair shape. Shes not promoting obesity, rather she’s putting down anorexia.

    December 12, 2013
    • But this in itself is problematic. “Putting down anorexia”? Anorexia is a mental illness, not a weight. It is a serious illness and a very serious problem. And I hate how, as a culture, we use it as a way to define people, by calling thin people “anorexic.” If you’re showing genuine concern for a friend who you have good reasons to believe may be having some serious issues with food and eating, then by all means, ask them if they need some help.

      So, I guess my point is, you can’t “put down” anorexia, as if it’s this shameful behaviour that people engage in to lose weight. Anorexia is NOT a diet plan, it’s a horrible disorder that has its main symptoms in severe weight loss, and to talk about it as if it’s a lifestyle or a diet is just horrible. I’m tired of people talking about horrible eating disorders that people DIE FROM as if they are some sort of personal choice or moral failing. No. Bullshit media standards are one thing, and I agree that the standard of thinness that we embrace is too often frightening, but thinness does not equal anorexia, and it’s time we stopped grouping them together.

      December 12, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        It also implies that only thin people have eating disorders.

        December 12, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        Yes, but anorexia is also a culturally bound mental illness. Don’t get me wrong, if someone has anorexia they should definitely see a mental health professional because you’re right, that’s not the sort of thing that can just get fixed by a few positive messages from a celebrity. But that doesn’t mean that a role model like JLaw can’t help prevent some girls from starting down that path in the first place.

        December 15, 2013
      • But the assumption behind that statement is that anorexia must stem from a desire to look like models or celebrities, which very frequently is not the case. It certainly wasn’t for me. Eating disorders are rampant among dancers and athletes, and it has naught to do with looking like celebrities. And while I’m certain many young women crash diet to look like celebs, it’s not going to turn into a full-blown ED unless there are other factors in place that are more complex.

        This is not to say extreme beauty standards have nothing to do with eating disorders, but I am so very tired of people oversimplifying EDs to girls wanting to look like celebs (also, men have EDs as well, though ranted there’s a much smaller percentage of them)

        December 15, 2013
      • @Lindsay, I think that you are oversimplifying the issue, just like the media does. Anorexia is an incredibly complex illness with complex issues, and to break it down to, “people want to look like skinny models,” is way way way oversimplifying it. Anorexia is not just about weight, that was my entire point. Extreme weight loss is a SYMPTOM of anorexia; anorexia itself is not weight loss, and too often we equate the two.

        Of course the unbelievable beauty standards we have are an influence on the prevalence of eating disorders, but to break it down to that is to do a major disservice to people with anorexia, because it demonstrates that you don’t actually understand them. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never been anorexic myself, and I wouldn’t pretend to know what it’s like, but based on research and some second-hand experience, I can tell you that it’s never as simple as weight. There are so many complex psychological issues surrounding it, that the media fails to address. Unfortunately, we’ve made anorexia into a certain weight instead of treating it like a serious mental illness, and it’s used pejoratively, as seen in the original comment I responded to. It’s gotta stop.

        December 17, 2013
      • Lindsay
        Lindsay

        Sorry, I don’t think I explained my point well. I was not trying to imply that if all the celebs were more like JLaw we wouldn’t have this problem anymore, I was just trying to say that if it helps combat the issue (even if the amount of help it gives only reaches a few girls, and even if that message is only one small facet of their recovery or avoiding the mental illness), then it is a positive thing. And I do think that it does help, again, even if only in a very small amount.

        December 17, 2013
  22. On a slightly different topic:
    The people who have never had the problem are usually the smartest ones about the solutions. I fought against acne for more than 10 years and there’s still some pimple here and there even now. People advised me to buy their expensive cosmetics, see a doctor, get birth control pills, eat healthy or my personal favourite: wash your face… So tiring. People should realize that sometimes they don’t know two shits about the matter and therefore they are not entitled to give any advice.

    December 12, 2013
    • Laina
      Laina

      Wanna know something fun? I’m on birth control. For other reasons, but a nice side effect was it did clear up some hormonal acne and helped with my oilness (also hormonal).

      So now I have dry skin. With acne. Yeaaaah.

      December 12, 2013
      • Well, it didn’t help me, but i’m holding my fingers crossed for you.
        But I think the acne will stop since you have dry skin now. It’s more sensitive now so do everything to calm it down. That usually helps me.

        December 14, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        Nah, it’s been almost 2 years now. The only difference really is I can’t use my old foundation.

        December 14, 2013
  23. Suqon madik
    Suqon madik

    This is a pretty stupid piece of writing. Why not write about something that actually matters in the world instead of just adding to the crap celebrity pieces no one gives two shits about anyway.

    December 12, 2013
    • Your comment is a pretty stupid piece of writing. Why not comment on something that actually matters in the world instead of just adding to the crap blog posts you don’t give two shits about anyway?

      December 12, 2013
      • Erin
        Erin

        I fucking love you, Jenny.

        That is all.

        December 13, 2013
      • faithbygrace
        faithbygrace

        *Stands up and applauds* Gosh, I wish I had your moxy!

        December 13, 2013
      • Thea
        Thea

        This blog should have a ‘like’ button. Dislike would be good too. Way to go, Jenny!

        December 28, 2013
  24. Chloe
    Chloe

    Wow I never knew JLaw said all that stuff! D: I noticed that at the oscars she said that she hadn’t eaten all day to get into her dress, which make her comments about how she doesn’t understand why other actresses diet seem kind of hypocritical.
    I don’t know why some people think its acceptable to shame people who are thin. There was this awful blog that JK Rowling wrote and she basically said that she doesn’t understand people who fat-shame (despite the fact that she does so in her books) and worries that her daughters will grow up skinny- obsessed and be ’empty-headed, self-obsessed, emaciated clones’. She does have a habit of completely going against whatever point she is trying to make…

    December 12, 2013
    • Sophie
      Sophie

      that’s a little harsh, to call her hypocritical. No one is 100% consistent in everything they do or say

      December 13, 2013
      • Chloe
        Chloe

        Well it might be harsh but it is hypocritical behavior. If you’re going to say how stupid you think other women are for going on starvation diets and then loudly proclaim that you starved yourself to fit into a dress that is somewhat of a double standard. Its not that she has just said ‘I like eating and I’m not going to be pressured into being a certain size’ in which case I wouldn’t think she was hypocritical, its the fact that she has criticized people who feel pressured into dieting (including teenage girls with eating disorders)

        December 13, 2013
      • Sophie
        Sophie

        has she really criticised the people who feel pressured, or has she criticised the system that creates the pressures? not in any way the same thing.

        yes it was a daft thing to say. but not eating during the day for fear of bloat is not the same thing as going on a long-term starvation diet. I agree she shouldn’t have said it at all, but I don’t think it means she actually does approve of starvation diets in secret

        December 13, 2013
      • chloe
        chloe

        I think she is well meaning in most of what she says but she seems to have said some very hurtful things. And with regards to dieting, some of her comments are insulting, for example ‘I’m really sick of all these actresses looking like birds’. That isn’t expressing pity that women feel the need to starve themselves, its saying that she doesn’t like the way they look.
        I don’t think she is secretly starving herself but her comments at the Oscars does show that she also feels the pressure to look a certain way. When I go to a party, I don’t feel the need to starve myself all day to avoid bloating. JLaw was doing it because she knows a lot people will be scrutinizing her appearance, so she clearly gets the pressure other actresses are under.

        December 13, 2013
  25. Jessica
    Jessica

    Just wanted to add my 2 cents on here. I agree with others on here, I really don’t think JLaw was intentionally shaming women who are skinny. I think as others have mentioned she was more advocating for herself and criticising the Hollywood system as a whole. I personally think she has done nowrong. It’s not her fault people are misconstruing her words and putting her on some body loving pedestal. And neither is it her fault that its unfortunate Melissa Macarthy could never voice the same opinions and not get some flack for it. She has every right just like any other woman to voice her opinion, just because she doesn’t fit the normal image of what being ‘fat’ is. If anything I think she’s trying to fight it. She knows that she’s not ‘fat’ even though by normal Hollywood standards she might be. And you know I think she’s saying more or less shes ok with it and doesn’t care. And by extension perhaps she’s saying everyone else needs to stop judging others by weight. She’s relatively new in Hollywood and she’s become really successful in her career and didn’t have to lose 1000 kgs to achieve it. She’s a better role model than any other actress her age.

    But yes I think it is pretty sucky that the media only ever ask female actors questions about weight, how the got into shape for x role, what their diet plans are. I think it was one for your posts Jenny, where I saw someone post something about the same exact issues and how Emma Stone came out saying she only ever gets asked these kind of questions and how boring it is, whereas men are not asked the same things (unless your Wolverine or something).

    To add further onto this while debate, I recently saw this video:

    While I get what they were trying to do, and they have valid points, it really grinded my gears. Even the title is really off.

    I posted the same video on my Facebook and got some really interesting thoughts, and a times often heated debate over it.

    December 13, 2013
  26. Bethany
    Bethany

    I think you’re attacking her for no reason. She IS young, attractive, and a healthy weight. She can’t do anything about that. She can’t make herself obese just to be an actual fat role model. She never claimed not to work out, she just emphasized not dieting. You say that in the real world she isn’t fat, she’s just Hollywood fat, but it’s Hollywood she’d living in and it’s the Hollywood standards that she is expected to live up to. I also don’t think she’s trying to shame skinny people, she’s just saying that she will never make herself skinnier than is healthy just to please others and fulfill Hollywood expectations. The fact that she isn’t fat isn’t her fault. You’re acting like the fact that people accept what she said about liking food compared to if Melissa is her fault. Obviously this is society’s fault, but I feel like the whole post was trying to blast Jennifer. Honestly, she is a good role model for young girls. She isn’t saying “skinny is bad” or “fat is bad”, all she’s saying is “I like my body regardless of what others say and I won’t harm [starve] myself just to fit other’s expectations.”
    Honestly, I think the weight problem comes from the people who try to push being fat as beautiful and healthy. It’s not. Those people can be beautiful, but being fat isn’t. The fact that most people do become overweight do to illness or poverty and other factors out of their control shows how ugly fat is. However, the fat and the person need to be separated. The empowering messages are all “You and your curves are beautiful” when the messages should be “Everyone is a beautiful person, but you should always work towards being your healthiest self.” (I’m sorry if any of that was worded offensively, I’m not a politically correct person, I don’t think down on anyone based on their weight or how they look, I just think weight issues need to be handled better than they are now.)

    December 13, 2013
    • I’m sorry if you felt this post was attacking Jennifer Lawrence. I specifically stated, more than once, that it was not Jennifer Lawrence herself I was concerned with, but the way the internet has used her remarks. This post is more about Jennifer Lawrence, internet fandom banner.

      I never suggested Jennifer Lawrence should get fat. I don’t know where that’s coming from. But one of the staples of this blog is examining the things we like and the problematic elements around those things. It’s not an attack on a celebrity to examine the statements they make and how those statements shape our culture. Public image is a part of a celebrity’s job. 90% of the posts on this blog are dissecting problematic pieces of pop culture– and celebrities fit into that.

      Finally, I’m actually a fan of Jennifer Lawrence. Which is why I knew enough about to her write an entire post just about remarks she’s made about food. I know I seem like a passionate person, but I usually won’t write something unless I’ve already got a good idea of where to find quotes and links, because I’m super lazy.

      But this should in no way be misconstrued as me being a closet 50 Shades fan.

      December 14, 2013
      • Bethany
        Bethany

        Oh, come on. We all know you’re just recapping the books because you lurv them.

        December 14, 2013
    • It’s true. When I do it with Mr. Jen, I’m like, “Put a Greybie in me!”

      December 14, 2013
      • Oh mah glob, Jenny. You made me snort out loud at work! *Greybie* That would ruin the mood right there! (And have I told you how happy I am that I CAN read you at work on wordpress because that content warning no longer comes up?)

        December 16, 2013
  27. Jenny, I just wanted to say thank you for including thin women when talking about body shaming. I’m generally not a fan of the “thin privilege” term, but I feel there is this misconception that if a woman (outside of Hollywood) meets societal ideals of thinness, then body-wise life is easy street for her. I can say for a fact this is absolutely not the case. I’m 5’6″ and have been somewhere in the 110lbs range for most of my adult life, and I can’t tell you how many times people have assumed I was sick or had an eating disorder and inquired with great concern about my health. I have had “interventions” staged and constant assurances that I don’t “need” to diet/exercise if I skip dessert or go for a run, because surely no woman ever skips dessert because she’s not hungry or goes for a run because she feels like it. I still shop in the teen department and have to special-order bras (since most stores don’t carry anything smaller than a 32A, unless it’s for teens, and I have too much pride to wear a training bra at 35). I’m glad I know how to sew, because I have to alter a lot of clothing I buy to fit me properly. In supposed “body positive” spaces I see Hollywood-thin women often being demeaned as not “real women” or compared to adolescents. I know this sounds weird after I just said i shop in the teen department but well… those are the only clothes that fit me. My whole point here is that anyone who doesn’t have a JLaw-type body–fat or thin–falls outside the norm and is basically not a “real woman” or whatever. I know that fat women have it rougher than thin women, and I’m not trying to imply otherwise. I’m just saying it’s not exactly easy street for the other extreme, either, and I really appreciate that you acknowledged that.

    I understood this piece not as a condemnation of J.Law herself (at least re:her body remarks) but of the cult of fangirling that’s been built around her. I understand that in Hollywood, she probably really does perceive herself as chubby, but in the real world, she’d be considered quite thin. She actually has what I would call an ideal body. So it seems ridiculous to uphold her as this model of body positivity when she actually possesses what anyone outside of Hollywood would consider ideal! (Also, does it seem strange to anyone else that most people in real life, at least that I know of, actually *don’t* consider Hollywood thinness ideal? Talk about a disconnect).

    December 14, 2013
    • Laina
      Laina

      Nobody who says that you have thin privilege is saying you have a perfect life or anything. It’s an unearned advantage gained by one group over another. People who talk about thin privilege are not saying that your life is perfect or that it’s easy for you to be body confident. They are talking about THEIR experiences being discriminated against.

      December 14, 2013
      • Oh yeah, I get that. I wasn’t trying to negate those experiences or discount them in any way. I wrote that comment super late at night so I probably wasn’t at my most articulate. I meant that there is a perception among the general public (at least in my experience) that it’s easy to be thin(ner than the norm). Like I doubt anyone who looks like JLaw would be accused of being sick or anorexic, for example, just as she wouldn’t have all the concern trolling over her health that a larger person would. It sucks to be outside the norm in any extreme. You can’t win.

        I guess I am just naturally a little defensive when it comes to this debate because I’ve seen so much denigration of thin women in supposedly body-positive discussions (not here, but elsewhere).

        December 14, 2013
    • Sophie
      Sophie

      It’s been a long time since I was thin, but I have been, in the past (due to unhealthily eating very very little). And now I am fat (classic compulsive eating disorder). So I have experienced people’s reactions to both, I have experienced the ‘you’re too thin, are you ill’ as well as the ‘you’d be pretty if you just lost a few stone’ shit I get now. To me, the difference was just that even though people said negative things to me when I was thin, the impression I always had was that there was always a counter in that I was still being what was socially wanted/acceptable. I wasn’t invisible the way I am now. There was often envy and admiration mixed in with the comments. No one has ever wished they looked the way I look now, but plenty did the way I looked before, even when they were expressing ‘concern’.

      I realise that memory (and my wish to go back to being slim) might be playing tricks on me, and I in no way want to say that thin people don’t experience negativity or prejudice. I just wonder if other fat people like me do have a perception that there is some approval that goes along with it that we suspect might make it easier to deal with?

      I’m not saying it is easier to deal with, I realise different isn’t necessarily easier – just trying to be honest about my own reasons for thinking it might be in this case. I try to check my own thoughts whenever I feel envy for someone who is very slim, and to realise that this in itself doesn’t mean they don’t have problems, and I would hope I would never criticise anyone for their weight (I am wary of talking to anyone about weight/food issues full stop, because I know how I feel about my own ‘stuff’).

      December 21, 2013
  28. I’ve never paid any attention to Jennifer Lawrence, but I have seen several of Melissa McCarthy’s movies. When I watched The Heat and saw her doing all that physical stuff you never see fat people do, all I could think of is, “why didn’t she lose weight while filming?” She must have a very slow metabolism. Obviously Jennifer has a fast one, and as others have already said, it will slow down and she’ll battle weight along with the rest of us. 🙂

    December 14, 2013
    • Laina
      Laina

      …because science has said that’s now how bodies work and 95% of weight loss efforts, which usually mean reducing calories to create a deficit, fail?

      December 14, 2013
      • There are also genetic mutations that affect metabolism and appetite, and therefore weight. It’s not impossible that there are plenty of undiagnosed adults with such mutations, because the discovery of these genes and their functions is still relatively new. I work for a geneticist who specialises in these genes and we see hundreds of kids who are overweight because of it, but are physically quite healthy nonetheless. (Not saying that’s definitely the case with McCarthy, but I think it’s worth keeping in mind that there’s still a hell of a lot we don’t understand about how the body regulates appetite, metabolism, and fat storage).

        December 16, 2013
    • Weight loss is such a complicated thing, because nobody loses weight in the same way, at the same rate, or at the same level of difficulty. Some people lose weight really easily, and some people can just barely lose any, even when they’re really trying. Unfortunately, with our media portrayals of weight and the weight loss industry, we’ve been convinced that weight loss is simple—when really, it’s so complex on so many levels, and there are actually a LOT of varied opinions from medical professionals on how weight loss works. There’s still a lot that we don’t know about it, a lot that we don’t know about metabolism and fat. It’s sad, because people who have a lot of difficulty losing weight get shamed and told they’re not trying hard enough (even when they might be).

      December 17, 2013
  29. nic
    nic

    I don’t understand what the problem is. What do you suggest that she do or say in interviews to make this better. What and how should she respond to these inane questions about her weight? I’m curious. By the way, saying ‘Jennifer Lawrence body shames you more than you might have realized’ is incredibly mean-spirited.

    December 14, 2013
    • It doesn’t matter what Jennifer Lawrence says. That’s not the problem. The problem is the way internet fandom spreads these comments as though they’re empowering. I’m pointing out that they reinforce the body image issues that are causing these statements in the first place. Which I explained in two paragraphs in the middle of the post. Jennifer Lawrence is just in this post because she’s currently the face of internet body positivity.

      December 14, 2013
  30. Let’s read something about Courntey Stodden. It’s probably mean to say it but she always makes me fell better in all aspects.

    December 14, 2013
    • I hate saying that I feel terrible for people who might actually be happy in their lives, but I feel like, wow. Man. She is so young. Why are people not giving her better advice?

      December 14, 2013
      • Jessica
        Jessica

        Maybe she is getting better advice but whether she is choosing to listen to those people…that’s a different matter. We can’t know for sure although it does seem her mother and now ex husband enable that kind of behaviour.

        December 14, 2013
  31. Sassy
    Sassy

    I just stopped by to say THANK YOU from a skinny girl who is really fed up of these skinny = anorexic labels. I am skinny. I have always been skinny. I do not starve myself; I actually eat a crapload of junk food, I just happen to have a likewhoa metabolism like my fellow skinny never-stops-eating mother.

    I don’t know what’s going on in America, but let me tell you something about England. In the last 6 years or so I, myself, have not fluctuated in weight more than a couple of pounds each way. And yet since 2007 I’ve gone from being a UK size 10/12 to a size 6. How did that happen!? I’ll tell you how; it’s the same reason why I now go into a shop and pick out a size 10 and it looks like a circus tent. It’s because we have such an obesity epidemic in the UK right now and rather than adding plus sizes to their ranges that (they believe) will make women want to cry and cut themselves for just wearing them, the clothing companies have instead just decided to phase out skinny people. Yup. It’s all a big scheme so that rather than realising they’re overweight because they’re squeezing into a label that says size 16, larger ladies can now get into a 10 – the media’s so-called “perfect” size. Never mind that it’s frikkin massive and clearly not a 10 in anything other than name.

    I am lucky these days if I can go into any high street shop and find something that doesn’t hang off me like a potato sack. According to UK sizes I’m apparently now a fucking twig and am due to disappear entirely sometime by 2015. I have nothing against larger people but I’m so fucking tired of suddenly being the one who cannot find anything my size in clothing shops when I’M not the one eating myself into an early grave.

    December 15, 2013
    • To an extent, this vanity sizing thing is happening in the US too. The reason i shop in the teen dept is that women’s clothes are vanity sized so big they hang off me like a tent. And I resent having to special-order bras because no stores carry band sizes smaller than 32. This is why I get really resentful when people act like thin women never have trouble finding clothes. lol no.

      It’s even worse in Hawaii too, because we have a lot of smaller people here and so small sizes sell out instantly.

      December 15, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        Can you walk into a store, any store, and reasonably believe you’ll find clothing that covers your body? Not that fits well, or that’s cute. That covers your body so you are not naked.

        December 15, 2013
      • I honeslty don’t know what you’re trying to say here. I worked in a department store and it had a pretty comprehensive plus-size section with a lot of cute styles. If a person is larger than the largest sizes in most plus-size stores, then I am sorry for their difficulty finding clothing, and agree that that is pretty shitty. Again I live in Honolulu where most people are small so perhaps my experience would be different elsewhere. I am speaking only for myself, nobody else. My sole point is that no matter how you slice it, ANYONE outside the norm of any size gets screwed. That is all I’m trying to say. The degrees of screwed might be different, but screwed nonetheless.

        December 19, 2013
      • laina1312
        laina1312

        If your house burned down with everything in it, could you walk into Walmart or a mall and find something to over your body so you would not be naked? Because if the answer is yes, then that’s the difference. And it’s thin privilege.

        December 19, 2013
      • Oh, I get it. You’re trolling. Carry on then.

        December 20, 2013
    • Clarella
      Clarella

      Hey Sassy, I know you probably didn’t mean it that way -and understand that you’re being fed up with stuff-, but you’re being slightly disingenious here.

      The statement: ‘I actually eat a crapload of junk food’ at the beginning does not jive with the judgy and condesending: ‘when I’M not the one eating myself into an early grave’ at the end. You actually are, you’re just not getting fat from it. And that’s thanks to your lucky genes, but not because of your awesome willpower or something.

      Own up to that and your comment will be a lot more powerful, because you do have a very good point about the vanity-sizing. 🙂

      December 16, 2013
      • Sassy
        Sassy

        But Clarella, I’m not eating myself into an early grave. My metabolism does cover for me and I’m grateful for that, of course. But if it didn’t, I’d stop eating junk food. If I started to get out of shape, I’d stop. If I found I couldn’t run up the hill to my house without shortness of breath, I’d stop. If my cholesterol or blood pressure was through the roof, I would stop. That’s the difference. I’ve already had to slow down because my metabolism isn’t what it was in my teens, and I’m fine with that.

        I resent that my size is not catered for and is actually considered anorexic when those who overeat grotesquely are not just catered for, they are *pandered* to by this absurd mislabeling of clothes. I’m not referring to those who are large because of big bones or a glandular problem or matters which are out of their control, I’m referring to what’s happening in this country right now, because there’s no way the obesity epidemic in the UK and this label-changing phenomena just ‘happen’ to coincide. By labelling a size 20 a size 10 obesity is being rewarded with this societal, media-induced feeling of ‘oh, I’m skinny enough to be a perfect 10, yay’, and that’s just wrong on so many levels; it’s lying to the obese person by telling them they don’t have a problem, and it’s marginalizing those who do eat healthily by making them feel like they have to gain a ridiculous amount of weight just to fit into what has always been their size.

        It’s basically a giant mindfuck made to cash in on a serious cultural problem, and it’s really disgusting.

        December 21, 2013
  32. Red
    Red

    “she [JL] can actually believe that she is fat, if she wants to.”
    I have to take issue with this this. normal weight gals who think they are fat don’t do so “because they want to”. It’s called body dimorphic disorder and it is fairly rampant in young girls and a major cause of eating disorders.
    As much as I feel sorry for anyone who can look like JL and think they are fat, but accept their alleged fatness, there are 100’s of girls who are not so accepting of their non-existent obesity, which osbert we see average and thin sized 10 year olds talking about needing to go on a diet.

    December 15, 2013
    • Sarah
      Sarah

      Body dysmorphic disorder is not “fairly rampant” in young girls.

      For one thing, BDD is as common in men as it is in women, and age has nothing to do with it. It’s more than low self esteem or poor body image; it’s a serious and devastating mental illness that is linked with depression, social phobia, and feelings of intense shame. It can trigger mental illnesses such as anorexia, but it’s also not always about weight.

      For years, I was housebound because of BDD.

      “I can’t meet up today, my eyebrows are wrong,” I would say. Or, “My nose is huge”. Sometimes, yeah, “I’m too fat.”

      It took me years to get a proper diagnosis of body dysmorphic disorder, because I was told “All women hate the way they look”. We live an a culture where self-hatred is so normalised it took me years to get treated for a mental illness that was destroying my life.

      But BDD and poor body image are NOT the same thing.

      December 16, 2013
  33. Great post, Jenny, although the comments are….hmm.

    I read or skimmed the whole conversation above and I feel the same frustration I always do when people talk about being obese. Let me tell you, as a fat woman (not just BMI fat, but fat fat buy clothes only in special stores fat get called nasty names by strangers fat) what I would love to see when obesity (actual obesity, not Jennifer Lawrence fuck I wish I was ‘fat’ like her obese) is discussed.

    I’d like to be able to talk about being fat without several someones jumping up and down to tell me
    – the BMI is a poor tool for measuring obesity. Thanks, I know that. All obese women know that. But we know what our scales, our mirrors, the clothes we buy and where we buy them, the physical things we can do and can’t do, our knees, all tell us. I’m fat.
    – omigod you’re a lazy cow who eats too much, euwww. Thanks, but I probably eat less than you do, squire. The damage was done in the past, for reasons I’m not going to talk to you about because you’re a dick and a stranger

    I’d like to be able to talk about why being fat makes me unhappy about my body without being accused of fat shaming, or being told I need to accept being fat. No, I won’t. It makes me unwell and it makes me unattractive, and damn it, I’m not done with vanity yet.

    I’d like to be able to talk honestly about why being fat is *not* healthy for most people, and certainly not for me, without
    – people throwing studies at me about fat people who have good cholesterol, blood pressure and fitness. Guess what, I’m not one of them. Lucky you if you are. For a lot of people, being very overweight makes them sicker. Ignoring that doesn’t help.
    – being told being fat has many causes. Yeah, I know that too. Still doesn’t mean that I must try and do what I can to address a serious health issue for *me*
    – people ignoring that obesity for women causes particular problems, and is a particular risk factor for certain cancers. At 23, it’s not a problem. At 53, it’s terrifying.

    But I’d also like to be able to talk about medical issues without everything being brought down to weight.

    I’d like to be able to talk about what diets help me and don’t help without
    – being told diets don’t work. Yeah, I know that. But I do lose weight for a time on them sometimes, and being lighter feels good. Eating properly feels good. So I try good ones.
    – being told that I can scarf a pound of saturated fat each meal so long as I avoid sugar and I will lose weight even though I’m taking in eleventy billion calories a day. Not for me, and not for most women
    – being told eliminating carbs is the one true answer. Guess what, it’s really not if you suffer from depression. It’s deadly in that case.
    – being told intermittent fasting is the one true answer. Fasting is disastrous for a lot of women both because of biology and previous disordered eating. It’s a disaster for women with depression too.
    – being told I just need to exercise more. Yeah, I do, but not to lose weight. Exercise is good for mood, cholesterol levels and blood pressure. It does fuck all for normal people because normal people who exercise more, eat more. Homoeostasis in action.

    I’d like to be able to talk about my concerns for the thirteen year old a few doors down who weighs more than my 6’2″ husband, and who looks like me at that age, without making her feel bad, like my mother did, suggesting Weight Watchers (which my mother put me on), or suggesting she eats better when her mother is on benefits (and so the affordable food is the crap food) and she’s got a ton of psychological issues which she partly addresses by eating her feelings (which I did and do and a lot of people do, skinny and fat.) I’d like to know how to encourage her without adding to the body hatred she already feels.

    In other words, I’d like to talk about real world problems for real world fat people without it becoming a battleground between the morally righteous non-fat people, the morally righteous fat people, and all those nuts who think that they have a magic pill/diet/regime that fat people should just try and it will bring world peace…I mean thinness. I can’t wait for all the indignant scolds on both sides of the issue to find their next target. Can I suggest cyclists? Can’t we all agree that Lycra is an obscenity and no one needs to see a strange man’s “lunch box” over their morning coffee?

    December 16, 2013
    • I really, really, really appreciate this comment, Ann. Reading the comments on this post…ugh. I just feel like you hit the nail on the head with what was going on and being said and what /isn’t/ going on and being said.

      Can more people be like Ann, please?

      Also, I’m 100% with you on the lycra thing.

      December 19, 2013
    • J
      J

      “Can I suggest cyclists? Can’t we all agree that Lycra is an obscenity and no one needs to see a strange man’s “lunch box” over their morning coffee?”

      Agreed!

      December 19, 2013
    • Hey, I’m still lurking around here, and thank you for this comment. I think it can be hard to figure out what discussion it’s productive to have when everybody comes from such different backgrounds and situations, but seriously– thanks for your perspective. This sounds like a conversation I’d like to have/listen to.

      And also yes, down with Lycra. Maybe just for superheroes.

      December 20, 2013
    • Absolutely. To all of the above!

      December 20, 2013
    • Sophie
      Sophie

      Ann you win everything. Thank you, thank you, for saying this.

      December 21, 2013
  34. Channy
    Channy

    I don’t think any of this is JLaw’s fault, she’s trying to be as real as she possibly can to send a positive message, because she knows that when she does photoshoots… this still happens. So she maybe wants people to realize that underneath the glitz and glamour she’s just as real as anyone else (inspite of the touchups and the flawlessness)

    http://moviepilot.com/read/stories/1202400-they-forced-jennifer-lawrence-s-body-to-conform-it-s-disgusting–2?stamp=61145&subscribe_to=303520&utm_campaign=they-forced-jennifer-lawrence-s-body-to-conform-it-s-disgusting–2&utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=fb-stream-post&template=share&lt_source=airbrush2

    December 16, 2013
    • I think Jenny’s made it quite clear that she doesn’t think any of this is “JLaw’s fault” either. It’s about what people are doing with her comments and image, not what the woman herself says in interviews.

      December 17, 2013
  35. kittykilminster
    kittykilminster

    *struggles womanfully to contain all of the word vomit* Jenny, I’ve done very little in the past week besides reading your blog posts (I began that sentence originally by typing “I’ve done LITERALLY nothing…”, but then realised that some editing was required to avoid being forever sucked into the EL James Black Hole of Malapropism and Doom. I have done other things, obviously.)

    So, there were 3 things, I think. the first, predictably, is that I think you are fucking awesome: Initially for your 50 Shades recaps (Jenny Trout. Puts up with the bullshit, so you don’t have to.), but more so than ever now due to the amount of fuckery (and not the kinky kind) that you’ve put up with on this thread. Your responses feel astonishingly measured and logic-driven, which is generally not something I can manage well when discussing issues I care about passionately. I tend to squeak, smoke, and cry. Maybe you do too, and actually if you do I think I would only love you more. Ah, the joys of comment threads

    The second is THIS: “Basically if someone from India wants you to wear a sari at their wedding, for instance, that’s not an invitation to wear a sari at anyone else’s wedding or event, including your own. If they want you to do it again, they’ll ask.” I feel terrible that I can’t remember who said this and I don’t want to @ the wrong person. (hang on. It was clearly Maria. Scrolling is not hard. Stop being a twat, self.) I’ve been internetting for weeks trying to get a handle on cultural appropriation (I’m English, and I think there are definite differences in how this issue is understood and prioritised over here) and this is the clearest illustration I’ve come across. The link to nativeappropriations was also fucking excellent, so cheers.

    And finally – State of Trout. Yes please. If you decide to make the merchandise thing happen, how about ID cards? (also, whoever suggested “This guy. This fucking guy” t-shirts is a genius. This too.)

    So, I failed miserably to contain my word vomit, and clearly have something of a problem with parentheses. But I still think you fucking rule. More wine now.

    December 21, 2013
  36. Fernanda
    Fernanda

    It’s funny i got here looking for pictures of her, but i have also thought about everything that is said here, that all those things she says wouldn’t be the same if they were told from a real fat women, they would be taken differently and that’s what society is about, judging because of how you look, I’m not against jennifer in fact, she has become a kind of role model for me, really love her and her being herself nor anything that is said here because i actually think is true, but as a real fat girl she did help me with all those comments, i still tell myself that i’m discusting for how i look, but now i can accept myself and not to be so hard on my looks, i know being fat is not healthy and i really what to change that, but meanwhile that happens and i start changing my life i can look at my reflection and i don’t start insulting me anymore, i can now look at my self and say, ok you are human and i’m sure we will change this, for our own good and that’s what i take from a women like her, the positive image she gives to all of us who are like me, fat and hateful of themselves and tell them that there is a way to stop the hate to the most important person in your life, youself

    December 23, 2013
  37. Ori
    Ori

    Your analysis of what she is saying is so jaded by your own past experiences in life that you can’t get passed the fact that she never said she was fat, just not “Hollywood skinny”, which is an unhealthy weight. Similar to how models are starting to be more and more at healthy weights rather than being skin and bones
    She, very apparently, is not talking about being fat, rather just healthy looking
    Being fat is not at all healthy and both men and women should do what they can to be healthy
    Any person who thinks she is trying to be an advocate for fat girls is grasping at strings for a celebrity to say its fine to be fat so they can justify their unhealthy habits.
    People have different body types, rates of metabolism, etc. But there is an objective state of healthy and she is doing a great job of it

    December 24, 2013
    • You have no idea if Jennifer Lawrence is healthy or not. And no one owes it to you to be healthy or live a healthy life. Merry Christmas.

      December 24, 2013
  38. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Maybe if y’all actually felt good about yourselves and your bodies, you wouldn’t feel the need to attack people who do feel good about themselves. You’re not threatened because she looks better, you’re threatened/jealous that she’s found a way to be happy about the way she looks and you haven’t. Maybe you should focus more on what’s on the inside, because all you seem to do is put emphasis on looks and that’s just wrong…

    December 26, 2013
    • I’m not threatened by JLaw or unhappy with myself. I am, however, unhappy with the fact that you can’t fucking read.

      December 26, 2013
  39. Mo
    Mo

    I think this is taking Jennifer Lawrence’s words and twisting them around. First, she’s not speaking for an entire nation, trying to solve an obesity epidemic, or saying anything along the lines that being fat it wrong or gross or whatever else. Jennifer Lawrence is saying, to a humongous group of young women who now idolize her by THEIR choice not hers, to be who you are and don’t let a messed up world like Hollywood and entertainment lead you astray. That most of what you see isn’t real. It’s photoshopped and an unattainable goal. No one looks like the. If anything, she’s trying to be relatable – like most in America, she doesn’t like to diet, she eats McDonalds and likes to lay in bed until 3. She works out, but she hates it. Obviously Jennifer is on the skinnier side. Maybe it’s her genetic code. Maybe she’s got a freakishly high metabolism. She’s forever bouncing off walls as it is. But the point of her message is that she is going to be who she is and everyone is allowed to be who they are. And no one should be able to dictate what type of body is acceptable in society, because EVERYONE is acceptable in society.

    Also, the girl is only 23, and was thrown face first into being a role model for millions of girls. She’s trying her best and doing a pretty good job.

    And Melissa McCarthy rules. If I had a daughter I would be proud for MM to be her role model.

    December 26, 2013
  40. That happens to me i aam skinny and i thibk i am chubby and everyone is like your a twig and plz font tell me anyyhing mean i really did not get it sory if there are misspelled words i was in a rush

    December 26, 2013
  41. winston
    winston

    Yawn. She is making a simple point that despite being a normally fit, attractive young woman she was told she was overweight by Hollywood standards and that these standards are extreme. She was even called overweight in the NY Times. In fact the whole point is that she is not overweight except by the outmoded standards of Hollywood. How is criticizing Hollywood’s anorexic standards “body-shaming” (a term that marks its user as a dimwit)? So an actress trying to be responsible should say nothing because she is attractive? Missed the point by a country mile. And is Ms. Trout suggesting that the standards Hollywood traditionally imposes on young women are fine?Not exactly the sharpest tool in the shed.
    As to alleged other comments, Ms. Trout is perfect. She never gets nervous. Never tells a bad joke. Never puts her foot in her mouth. Isn’t laughably petty. LOL. Given how poorly reasoned and bitter her “critique” is, and how easy it was to swat away, why do I doubt that. Glass houses and all.

    December 27, 2013
    • I don’t know about not being laughably petty, because when I read your last comment on this post, I thought, “Go fuck yourself, buddy,” so I guess I’m petty. What’s cool though is, I’m not a sanctimonious fuckstick who is so “bitter” and threatened by someone else’s easy to “swat away” opinion that I have to leave three novel-length comments and a personal attack in order to right my world view.

      So… go fuck yourself, buddy.

      December 27, 2013
  42. winston
    winston

    Also I’m curious as to what a good role model to young women is supposed to say. Should it be, “It’s OK to be dangerously overweight; make no effort to be healthy and fit because this is ‘body-shaming’ and our culture needs to be reformed top to bottom?” Or should it be, “Try to be fit and healthy but its OK if you are not a size zero in compliance with an artificial entertainment industry standard?”

    For those of us not living in fantasy land obesity is a legitimate issue. Aside from nonsense like magically transforming human culture and standards of health/attractiveness, which is a waste of breath, a proper role model would advocate the second point. As someone who has had my own battles with obesity, telling young people that they should be physically active and healthy while not feeling pressured by extreme body image standards IS being a good role model. And Lawrence has credibility precisely because she is considered fit everywhere but in Hollywood. McCarthy cannot play the same role because she doesn’t have the same credibility. Deal with it.

    I’m sorry, but trying to attack an actress for attempting to realistically reform body image standards is absurd. This may not be “utopia” where the very concept of being overweight is purged from human thinking, but it is doing actual good in the real world. Obesity, utopian thinking aside, is a problem. Sorry if that is too backward thinking for the woolgatherers, but attacking someone trying to do good in real, practical terms because they are not trying to create an unobtainable ideal is perverse. Although all to typical of those who do nothing but criticize.

    December 27, 2013
    • winston
      winston

      In fairness I shouldn’t say does nothing. The blog author writes mediocre Vampire romances that virtually no one has heard of. (IT made the top 150 damn it!).Perhaps the concept was too novel. LOL.

      December 27, 2013
    • Your comment is completely out of left field and trying to make this blog post about something it isn’t. It isn’t about JLaw’s capabilities as a role model. It’s about how society is putting her up on a pedestal of ‘societally accepted fatness’ when she doesn’t really meet the criteria for fat anywhere except for Hollywood, which we the audience and author have conceded is a shame considering she is a perfectly beautiful young woman who shouldn’t have to defend herself in the first place. In fact, holding up JLaw as some paragon of a ‘fat actress’ when she isn’t likely considered overweight or obese in a pure numbers sense is only going to reinforce her own negative body images and make the need for a defense that much higher. This is about society and how putting JLaw on this pedestal is shaming to other women.

      Also your very argument is contradictory. “Should it be, ‘It’s OK to be dangerously overweight.'” A) The only person who could qualify to tell someone they are “dangerously” overweight is a certified medical health professional (even then finding a biased individual does not a diagnosis make), and B) If someone is “dangerously overweight” as determined by a medical professional and it’s not ‘they are overweight but happen to have a dangerous, aggressive form of cancer’ then obviously that is a problem that the person in question and their medical professional have to solve on their own terms and either way it’s not society’s damn business. “…make no effort to be healthy and fit because this is ‘body-shaming’ and our culture needs to be reformed top to bottom.” Judging people on their ability to be ‘healthy and fit’ is ableist as well as body-shaming. Some people literally cannot make the effort and you judging them does not make this inability go away. Also what people choose to do in their free time is once again not for you to judge and none of your business. For the record, someone choosing to pursue unhealthy lifestyles is not restricted to someone with obesity. You cannot judge who is healthy and who is unhealthy, hence body-shaming. Suggesting that it some gargantuan cultural reform is also misleading when all you have to do is mind your own damn business and check your damn privilege. You cannot take it your life and extrapolate it to someone else’s and say, “Well because I think and do this means everyone else can to.” Nope, sorry, you are not the judge of someone else’s lifestyle, choices, or habits.

      If you had actually read the article instead of jumping on buzzwords you would realize this is about a larger societal problem regarding body shaming and body image problems rather than just one actress who happens to be part of the pop culture surrounding the problem and not the source of the problem and probably is suffering just as much from the problem as the rest of us which has been recognized again and again. Also criticizing the ‘critical’ with criticism does not a fine point make.

      Also your puns are shit and if you want to write a post about literary criticism regarding vampire novels I am sure you’ll be reaching such a wide audience. Once again, thanks for trying to make something about what it is not.

      December 29, 2013
      • Winston
        Winston

        @Kylie-Why is this so difficult to comprehend? She is a fit, attractive young actress who isn’t overweight at all yet was accused of being overweight based on outmoded standards pushed by the entertainment industry. Producers said it. Film critics said it. So she criticized these extreme standards. How is that wrong? “Well society is saying…” Oh please. No one is holding her up as a “socially acceptable fat actress” because she isn’t. Nor does she claim to be. Again: THAT’S THE OVERWHELMINGLY SIMPLE POINT-SHE IS A FIT YOUNG WOMAN ACCUSED OF BEING OVERWEIGHT. And no degree of obfuscation is going to obscure it. What they are holding her up to be is a fit young women who rejects Hollywood’s starvation diet values. If you think that criticizing Hollywood’s anorexia inducing standards amounts to shaming this or that, get a freaking life. It is just simple decency. That Lawrence is fit everywhere but in Hollywood is why she can voice this criticism so effectively. Do you honestly think that a person who is actually obese would make the slightest dent in social attitudes? Sorry, but no. Truth can be so retrograde.

        And come off it in claiming that obesity is not a problem. You don’t need a medical degree to say that, which is a laughable, cliche-ridden dodge. As you get older and go for an annual physical keep your response in mind. “Ableist?” LOL. Really?

        Bottom line is that an immensely popular young actress has taken a very proper stand against Hollywood’s vicious body image standards and is actually doing something good and some middling pseudo-intellectual blowhards are trying to attack her and desperately trying say something “profound” while in truth pathetically attempting to derive a negative from something absolutely positive in the most incoherent way imaginable. (“Don’t take a stand against Hollywood’s anorexic standards because this is ‘thin shaming.’ Or: “A thin actress shouldn’t do this because this is secretly ‘fat-shaming.'”-absurd and despicable). That you and the author incoherently and longwindedly twist yourself into a pretzel to find something (anything) negative in this is astounding. You-and the author-come off as the standard incompetent graduate school buffoon. You laughably delude yourself into thinking that learning a lingo is tantamount to making a cogent point. It isn’t. Learn to think before you lecture. You may even find some wisdom in the process.

        December 30, 2013
      • Winston
        Winston

        One more thing. If the article is not attacking Lawrence but only criticizing how society sees her and how she is viewed, then why is the title of the article “Jennifer Lawrence body shames more than you might have realized”? Very curious title for an article supposedly about how society’s alleged perception of Lawrence is the problem. Backtracking like hell.

        December 30, 2013
      • Laina
        Laina

        There was that moment where she thought it’d be cute to dress up as a “fat witch” for Halloween and spend the night pretending to shove food in her face every time someone took a picture http://wtfplus.tumblr.com/post/69733392118/omg-celeb-gossip

        Yeah, no body shaming THERE.

        December 30, 2013
      • Winston
        Winston

        Laina-Wow. A person wore a witch costume to a Halloween party. That changes everything. LOL.

        Miserable, humorless and deranged is no way to go through life. Oh but I forgot…The people lobbing such soft-minded “attacks” are PERFECT. They never do anything wrong. Say anything off color among their friends. Put their foots in their mouths. Say the wrong thing. Think the wrong thing. They are saintly. Perfect. Pristine.

        So add hypocrite to my description of you. It’s a wonder within your self-righteous delusions if you can draw any joy from life at all.

        December 30, 2013
    • It’s not backtracking, you douche rodeo. I’m literally saying that she body shames people. Whether she intends to or not, her words are shaming. Those statements are HER words. The way people run with them compounds the problem. And I fail to see how I’m “backtracking” on a point that I make clear in the article, up to and including praising her for being responsible about her younger fans. But it doesn’t matter. This entire piece could have been in PRAISE of JLaw, and you would have found some other way to pick me apart to make yourself feel smart. I hope it worked, because otherwise you’ve just made yourself look like a completely asshole for nothing.

      December 30, 2013
      • Winston
        Winston

        And I’m literally saying you are a blithering idiot Ms. Trout. Hopefully this isn’t over your obtuse head, but you are the one moronically trying to attack a young actress for the new and improved “thought crime” of unintentional, unconscious, inadvertent, unpremeditated, indirect, tertiary “fat-shaming.” (“Whether she intends it or not…”). All for the sin of taking a stand against the extreme body image standards Hollywood imposes on young women, and oblivious to the extraordinary good this does. (What good have you even tried to do incidentally?). And you presume to lecture anyone about douchebaggery? You wrote the book on the subject dimwit. You are a middling, hackish twit who tried to bully a young woman and fell in way over your pea-brained head. And now you think you can double down on stupidity? How courageous. Ha! How are you different from someone like Joan Rivers again? Because you try to cloth viciousness in more polite language? It’s the same bullying attitude. I’m not trying to pick you apart to feel smart. (I don’t need to). The exact point is that you wrote this to try to satisfy your petty need to feel superior. I find that to be hilarious. You reap what you sow.

        December 30, 2013
      • How am I different from Joan Rivers? Money is the first difference that springs to mind.

        December 30, 2013
      • Christina A
        Christina A

        Wait, wait, wait – so if someone’s words are (mis)interpreted by someone else, that misinterpretation is his/her fault? Also, one might be able to say that you are backtracking by saying that you’re not attacking her but then you go on asserting that “she body shames people” (just saying, that could be it). And why is it that you can’t seem to respond to people who disagree with you without either biting sarcasm or cursing – that’s about as productive as saying people who are conventionally attractive can’t be mascots for body positivity….

        December 31, 2013
      • Christina, it isn’t that hard to read the other comments I’ve left on this post. I’ve had reasonable discussions with people who didn’t agree with me, and I’ve enjoyed those discussions because I like it when this blog starts a dialogue.

        But Winston’s posts were not a dialogue. Winston’s posts were angry, insulting tirades. I am not required to treat Winston better than Winston treated me.

        December 31, 2013
      • Christina A
        Christina A

        I’ve read most of your responses actually. Which is why I saw that you find the idea of someone conventionally attractive being a spokesperson for body positivity so insulting, which is just silly – how about a dialogue on that point?

        December 31, 2013
      • Okay, we can talk about that. Here’s the thing: there’s nothing wrong with a conventionally attractive person promoting acceptance at any size. It would be awesome if more did, and as I said in my post, I find it admirable that JLaw sets that example to her young fans. However, the problem is when that conventionally attractive person is put on a pedestal for her remarks, while people at more extreme ends of the scale (no pun intended) are denied representation in the public dialogue on body issues.

        In the comments on this post, and some of the comments I’ve seen on Tumblr, there are people who have found Jennifer Lawrence’s remarks (or more accurately, the wide spread repetition of those remark) damaging to their own self image. Unfortunately, the common attitude is that rather than listen to the concerns of those people about their body images and their experiences, these objectors should just go away and sit quietly, and be thankful that women who are empowered by this message feel better about themselves.

        Jennifer Lawrence can talk all day about how horrible it is to be called fat, but it won’t change the issue at the very heart of this problem: she’s the one people are listening to because she isn’t fat. They wouldn’t want to hear the same message from someone who is.

        December 31, 2013
      • Winston
        Winston

        So judging from you latest reply Ms. Trout, it’s still Lawrence’s fault that people will listen to her and not others on this issue? That makes no sense at all as you well know. Of course the issue she is addressing are pervasive body image standards in the advertising and entertainment industry that are extreme and unhealthy to young women. And the fact that she isn’t overweight is the precise point in showing that these attitudes are extreme. You apparently pine for the day when society transforms and obesity is not viewed in the slightest negative way. How nice. However your theory that it is somehow improper for a non-obese person to voice these objections no matter the good it accomplishes is among the stupidest things I’ve ever read. Again, what you have a problem with are societal attitudes which you chose to couch as a petty attack on a young actress trying to do something good.To be honest I think you can figure this out already but you painted yourself into such a corner that you can no longer admit it without losing face. So the choice is either admit that you acted like a pathetic bully, an older woman attacking a younger one to satisfy your feelings of personal inadequacy. Or admit that you have the logical acuity of the average turnip. Decisions, decisions. If it means anything, I think you are both. And btw, the difference between you and a vile attack comic like Rivers is not simply money, but also talent, or your relative lack thereof.

        Nice to see you are giving voice to the wretched of the earth from the tumblr universe. LOL. In my experience the discrete individuals who make up the insular tumblr grievance industry is one of the very few things you compare favorably to. They are offended by everything (e.g., criticizing Hollywood’s extreme body image standards is somehow “thin-shaming”), but their personal issues do not have the slightest reasonable foundation. And they hide behind a comment wall. At least you take public criticism. You are too obtuse or dishonest to hear it, but you at least have that in your favor.

        January 1, 2014
      • Winston, you need to stop saying “bully.” You’re only using it because it’s a buzzword of the moment, and you don’t care what it really means.

        On the other hand, your repeated and unwarranted personal attacks– which began before you engaged in any kind of dialogue with me at all– on me actually ARE bullying. So you need to shut the fuck up, and get the fuck away from my blog.

        Any further comment from you will be unnecessary. I’ll do you the favor of deleting all of them. So either waste your time writing scathing invectives against my talent, my career, and my intelligence, or simply fuck off. The choice is yours.

        January 1, 2014
  43. Feminist Cupcake
    Feminist Cupcake

    Okay – well I’m tired of complaining about hollywood’s body standard and shaming – I want to see people do something about it so I created this petition: http://chn.ge/1a6GZyq

    December 27, 2013
  44. Jane Jensen
    Jane Jensen

    Everyone just shut up and eat better and exercise. You’re pathetic for sitting on the internet complaining about a 23 year old girl.

    December 28, 2013
    • Alex
      Alex

      ha! Tis true.

      December 28, 2013
    • Davey
      Davey

      It may be easy to miss, but the article’s opinion has not to do with the “23 year old girl”,(Jennifer Lawrence), but with the public’s reaction to her.

      That is, the author is interested in exposing the “public reaction” to a “celebrity” that passes in the name of “positivity” and “open-mindedness” and “progress”, but in fact, is quite subtly destructive.

      I think that is a distinction worth noting.

      It has nothing to do with a “girl” or “exercise”, but with “misplaced conclusions”. Which is always worth exploring

      December 28, 2013
    • Honey. I even BOLDED parts for you so you could read it better. And you STILL missed the point. That’s a special kind of something, let me tell you.

      December 28, 2013
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous

      YESSS! You don’t have to “go hungry” on a diet. Fill up on fruits and veggies instead and you’ll see results.

      December 28, 2013
    • The-Great-Dragon
      The-Great-Dragon

      There are so many flaws in your logic. (Seriously, I should not have returned to read the Tumblr people comments.)

      December 29, 2013
      • Davey
        Davey

        I agree, the Tumblr comments are so far decontextualized, it’s a rather nasty stain on the article itself.

        But the overall tone of the article is quite insightful and poignant nonetheless.

        December 30, 2013
    • Fuck you, this is about society, not one person.

      December 30, 2013
    • B.O.B.
      B.O.B.

      Learn to read you dumb twat 😛

      December 31, 2013
    • Tanya
      Tanya

      My thoughts exactly! A diatribe’s worth of typing does not constitute a workout. And no, for anyone who care’s information, I am not by any means a skinny mini (be that considered bad, good, or otherwise). I am quite a large woman who practices exercises that would probably freak out a sizable (no pun intended) portion of the population. I have a skinny friend who just about eats her weight in food every day, do you hear me whining? NO! Wanna know why (no? too bad)? Because I don’t live in her body, I live in mine and I deal with, and revel in, what I’ve been given. So JLaw gets to eat fries without consequence. Why is this important to us? THAT right there is a big part of the problem. We’re so busy minding other people’s business these days that we’re not properly minding our own. Get over yourselves.

      December 31, 2013
      • 1. It wasn’t a diatribe.Diatribes are characterized as “forceful” and “bitter.” Regardless of what you wish to believe, my post was neither. It was just me, sharing my thoughts.

        2. No one cares about your exercise habits. Guess what? I’m fat and I work out, too! Isn’t that amazing?! The difference between you and me is, I don’t think I need gold stars from internet strangers for not being “like THOSE” fat people.

        December 31, 2013
    • Demosthenes
      Demosthenes

      Telling everyone to just shut up and eat better and exercise is a very able-ist attitude…not everyone can do that, particularly the exercise thing.

      January 1, 2014
  45. Lauren
    Lauren

    This entire article is a debauchery of contradictions and loose ends. It’s paragraphs and paragraphs of “no offense, but (insert offensive remark here)”. First and foremost, it is no secret, and there are no tricks, behind the fact that some people can eat a lot of food that is not necessarily healthy food and not gain much weight while others cannot. ADDITIONALLY, what every person who claims Jennifer Lawrence is in some way “shaming” body shapes fails to recognize is that there is this crazy thing called exercise??????????? I would be willing to bet a fair amount of money on the sheer assumption that Jennifer Lawrence, in eating as a regular, food loving human would, also exercises; while someone like Melissa McCarthy does not. People will always look for something to hate in others, especially a well known and loved celebrity like Jennifer Lawrence, and if one takes offense to her comments and personality then the true “shaming” lies not in what she says but in the accusers own self confidence, which is no problem of Jennifer Lawrence’s.

    December 28, 2013
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous

      What you failed to understand is that not everyone is fat because they don’t exercise which she clearly stated. It was also never said that there were any tricks to being skinny and eating what you want, just that there are people who can’t live that way. Also, who are you to say that Melissa McCarthy does not exercise? Perhaps she does and is one of those who do not lose a lot of weight when they do. I have been overweight most of my life and it took me months upon months of vigorous exercise and strenuous diets which only shed a couple pounds here and there and yet I’m still not a thin woman. It is very stressful and demotivating to think that I will always have to do that just to be thin while others just flaunt they’re poor habits and perfect bodies. Maybe you’re the one who should not be so quick to judge.

      December 28, 2013
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous

      weight is also related to genetics by the way, it isnt always soley about eating the right foods and excersize.

      December 28, 2013
    • I’m an owner and fitness coach for a women’s only bootcamp style gym. I understand what you are saying above Lauren and also the opinions of anonymous. Fat Shaming/Thin Shaming/Any Shaming is simply wrong and shouldn’t be done. Societal norms and opinions be damned. What should matter is your own health at whatever size either of you happen to be. Genetics plays a role in the ways our bodies adapt to exercise, nutrition, etc.
      Simply stating whether or not someone exercises or not is inaccurate. I have clients who are obese, have worked out regularly for years, eat a fairly healthy diet and have struggled for years to lose weight. There are many reasons why their weight struggled, but it comes down to consuming the right amount of calories in relation to how much work they are putting forth in their workouts, and also having each workout be challenging push themselves a little harder each workout.
      Each of my clients are beautiful. No matter their size, shape, age, or genetics. The key is seeking a professional that will share their knowledge and teach you about balance, exercise and what will work for you, Jennifer Lawrence, Melissa McCarthy or whoever.
      Oh and I LOVE ADVENTURE TIME!!!

      December 30, 2013
  46. Anon
    Anon

    Maybe if instead of rolling in self-pity for how women in America’s bodies are looked at we stopped caring so much and worked on how we see ourselves?

    December 28, 2013
  47. anon
    anon

    Dear everyone who says that Melissa should go exercise
    ummm why are we concerned about anyone’s exercise habits? I care about Melissa’s talent as a comedian, not whether she works out. We aren’t telling the plethora of overweight male comedians to exercise. Also, I have read interviews where she says that she regularly does pilates and many other physical activities.

    December 28, 2013
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous

      Can I get an amen?

      December 28, 2013
  48. Shame on you Jane Jensen

    December 28, 2013
  49. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    This article is just lazy.

    December 28, 2013
    • I’d give this comment a 3 on the 5 comment scale. Not a lot of thought went into the composition and there are no examples and no proof to back up the “lazy” assertion. On the other hand, no words were misspelled and there is a period. Wait. I’m taking off half a point for commenter not being brave enough to use a real name. And another half hypocritical point for laziness. So we’re down to a 2 out of 5 .Why do you bother? Why do I bother? OMIGOD THERE IS NO POINT TO YOUR COMMENT OR MINE!

      happy new year.

      January 1, 2014
  50. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    I think everyone needs to really competely stop worrying and caring about what other people look like. There are more important things to worry about than weight. Fat people. Thin people. The message shouldn’t be ‘everyone is beautiful no matter what’ it should be ‘beauty doesn’t matter. beauty is cool. but just as cool as being a nice person. a talented person. a hardworking person.’ Only then will anything really change.

    December 28, 2013
    • Yeah, I don’t know why it’s such a radical and unacceptable idea that a person is a person, even if they’re not physically attractive.

      December 29, 2013
  51. The question is…why are we bashing Jennifer Lawrence if our real goal is supposedly to stop body-shaming ANYONE?…as well as their own self-image….so essentially, this author is doing the same exact thing to JLaw. Maybe Jen sees herself a certain way; why does that speak “thin privilege” to anyone larger or smaller than her? Her self-image is subjective….just like sexuality, choices, and actions. (The so-called sources of “shaming” you so defend). There are more than a few loopholes here and quite honestly I’m sick of people looking for any word to tack “-shaming” onto.

    December 28, 2013
    • “I’m not making this post to attack Jennifer Lawrence. I’m making this post to attack the rabid fandom that has grown around her.”

      Reading is fundamental.

      December 28, 2013
      • Anonymous
        Anonymous

        I don’t understand the issue. Why should it be unacceptable to support another woman who is taking a stand against the fake image Hollywood is trying to portray? Isn’t that what JLaw is doing? Her stance is against bullies like Joan Rivers who seem to think it’s okay to criticize women literally as her job. A person who puts a picture on a screen and rips it apart in the name of entertainment. Why do we allow that to be okay? Jennifer is taking a stance against the Hollywood producers who say “lose 10lbs” when a woman is already a healthy weight. She’s saying it should be about the acting, not the size of dress a woman is wearing. It’s about being who you are and not what others want you to be.

        Hollywood does not set realistic images for young women. They sell a lie that magazine covers and photo shoot images are attainable believe JLaw, Melissa McCarthy, Kate Winslet, etc.are all trying to show us, the viewer, that that isn’t what’s,important. If anyone is trying to shame anyone, it’s the media. They ask the questions, they write the awful tabloids, they do the photoshopping. Jennifer Lawrence’s argument is that she is not okay with the media representation of women. Blame the media for the spin. That should be your target.

        December 28, 2013
      • “Let’s concede the point here that she is, perhaps, a size or two above the Hollywood accepted norm. Let’s also concede the point that it’s admirable, being the star of a movie franchise aimed at teens, that she is concerned about the effect a too-svelte appearance might have on her audience, who are already bombarded with negative body messages every day. I’m not making this post to attack Jennifer Lawrence. I’m making this post to attack the rabid fandom that has grown around her.

        I’m not going to cover the fact that it’s fucked up that a girl like Jennifer Lawrence has to justify her perfectly gorgeous body to every single media consumer in the world. We all know that’s fucked up. Let’s focus instead on the fact that in order to appease our own self-doubt about our weight, we, the internet, have decided to ignore how body-shaming the entire image of JLaw, “Spirit Animal” to fat girls everywhere, really is.”

        It’s almost like I did EXACTLY WHAT YOU SUGGESTED, ANON.

        December 28, 2013
      • Anonymous
        Anonymous

        I read the article and all I see is reaching to find a fault which everything she said.

        December 28, 2013
      • Anon
        Anon

        It’s amusing how you honestly think that claiming the post is made without the intent to “bash” Jennifer Lawrence actually makes your ignorant remarks unoffensive. I’m not saying your argument is ignorant, I’m saying your article is ignorant. Reading is, in fact, fundamental.

        December 28, 2013
      • I think it’s hilarious that every time I’m like, “I’m talking about the fandom,” fans rush in and reflect that back onto the object their adoration. “You’re saying mean things about JLaw!” “No, I’m saying honest things about her fans.” “HOW DARE YOU SAY MEAN THINGS ABOUT JLAW!” “But I’m not, I’m saying that you, the fans, are the problem. You. Literally, I am saying that YOU are the problem.” “STOP SAYING JLAW IS THE PROBLEM!”

        December 29, 2013
  52. Rachel
    Rachel

    I’m sure Melissa McCarthy would be ashamed of this lazy, dumb and completely anti-feminist article.

    December 28, 2013
    • Please explain how it’s anti-feminist to call out women for making problematic statements that directly affect other women? I mean, you wouldn’t want to be perceived as lazy for not backing up your point.

      December 28, 2013
      • Anonymous
        Anonymous

        Whether you disagree with this article or not, you have to admit it is not lazy, for she put many hours of work into this. It is also not dumb, because many of her points have very good reasoning behind them. And why do we care if it’s anti-feminist? Feminists today are just another word for anti-Male.

        December 28, 2013
      • Anonymous
        Anonymous

        She’s doing something important and you’re trying to find fault with it because you don’t like the fandom. Her comments have helped women feel better about themselves.

        December 28, 2013
      • So, the people who find her comments lacking true insight or empowerment, they’re not women? Or it’s okay for our faves to say stuff that can be perceived as hurtful to some groups of women, so long as some women are made to feel better about themselves? That sounds like some mainstream feminism bullshit.

        December 28, 2013
      • Kim
        Kim

        Dear Anonymous,

        I’d like to say FUCK YOU! Feminists are not anti-Male – feminists are PEOPLE who want EQUALITY between genders, we are not men hating women who refuse to shave our legs and use deodorant either. If you meet women who proclaim themselves as feminists, but spout anti-male propaganda, please feel free to tell them they are not FEMINISTS.

        Here’s a list of what feminists are:

        – A person (as in male, female etc.) who supports the equality of women with men.
        – A member of a feminist political movement.
        – One who believes in bringing about the social, political, and economical equality of the sexes.

        December 31, 2013
    • Anonymous
      Anonymous

      THIS.

      And also “Well I think that if Melissa McCarthy did it then people wouldn’t listen to her” is a really stupid argument. There is no way of knowing, and honestly I think that people would feel the same if she did it instead of LJaw.

      December 28, 2013
      • Then you have a very poor grasp of reality. I’m a fat person who wrote a blog post suggesting that fandom took Jennifer Lawrence’s remarks and ran with them in a negative and harmful way, and in the comments it has been suggested that I should get diabetes and die, that I should exercise, that I feel sorry for myself, that I have no self-esteem, that I encourage an unhealthy lifestyle, etc. Two pages of these types of comments, and I have no where near the platform that an actress with a two successful television shows and some hit movies has. If you truly believe Melissa McCarthy wouldn’t receive hatred for making statements like the ones JLaw makes, you live in fantasy land.

        December 28, 2013
    • Okay
      Okay

      *snickers*
      I’m a fan of Jennifer Lawrence, so I’ve seen the fandoms, and of course not all fans are like this but this article is a bit misleading, almost implying that her fans are all rabid mutts. *high five for anyone who gets that!!*

      January 1, 2014
  53. Diamond
    Diamond

    I’m more shocked at the comments than this article. Some of you guys let your feelings get in the way of your actual understanding of the words used here. She’s not attacking Jennifer Lawrence at all just how her words have formed into a symbolistic meaning of something more than just words to the rest of the world. Believe it or not, celebrities do have a lot of power in their image and what it stands for which is why so much money is poured into maintaining that image. This is also why there are jobs like PR Agents out there that help stars maintain this image. The fact that she is allowed to celebrate her body the way it is, is great but take a look at her comments and what they really are saying. She’s not just saying its hurtful to fat women but also to thin women who, according to Jennifer are not even people in real life. There are some people who can eat what they want and never gain anything. I can exercise three times a day and eat healthy and barely lose a pound. I have a body chemistry that is different than those who can do the complete opposite and still look as if they work harder than I do. Some of us are actually fat and healthy. There are people who are fat and live regular healthy lives sometimes longer than those of thinner people. What would this mean to those who think that all fat people are just lazy slobs who do nothing but eat all the time? It means your perception of the truth is either very lacking or you’ve been caught up in society’s rules and standards of beauty.

    December 28, 2013
  54. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Thank you for writing something that just tries to tell people to not take everything people say at face value.

    December 28, 2013
  55. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    I understand the intent behind this post is not to call into question Jennifer Lawrence as a person, although sometimes the point of view slips and I feel it is a bit harsh. As a female, an overweight female, the same age as JLaw, I am thrilled that there is someone in Hollywood, who even at a conventionally accepted weight, is finally saying something against the tirade of unhealthy images I’ve personally been bombarded with from a young age. I also think it is important to consider intent behind Jennifer’s words. Although of course I cannot speak for her, she seems to have an off the cuff way of speaking and may not be aware of how these quotes can affect others. Which is why it is important to educate people about the importance of word choice, especially when speaking about our or other’s bodies. Hopefully some of this will find its way back to her, and maybe she will learn something to become an even better role model for young girls. Because as for Hollywood, right now she’s the best we got.

    December 28, 2013
  56. There is another industry besides media/Hollywood, medical science, that posits “fat/obese” is an undesirable state for a body to be in for quantifiable reasons such as associated diseases (heart, etc) and on average shorter life span.

    Also, there is a thing called fitness -its really egalitarian and is acquired through a geeky study of a certain specialized subset of medical science. General society accepts women in gyms, running and biking.

    We have devised a contemporary life in which the only route to being healthy is through healthy diet and fitness. Relying on just living -working, cleaning house, raising kids and even physical labor no longer produce a healthy body. I love that. Its like an IQ test.

    December 28, 2013
    • Nice word. ‘Industry’. Yes there is a whole industry devoted to telling women to feel like crap about themselves and buy a bunch of crap we don’t need and diet when we don’t need to, and ‘medical science’ often gets lost under a bunch of pseudo-studies diet companies push out in order to continue the facade that fat automatically means unhealthy. If you want to see some links you’ll find it was already covered in the previous page of comments so you can educate yourself there, including how crap it is to go by BMI.

      Society also shames women for appearing in public if you are too heavy so really it’s only acceptable to go to the gym, go running, or what have you if you already subscribe to the accepted form of beauty standards; otherwise it’s “Go inside and kill yourself you fat bastard.” Also even when you do subscribe to to beauty standards then you get harassed for simply being a woman which is not conducive to anyone who desires the opportunity to do those things. See @everydaysexism on Twitter. It’s a problem. It’s an intersectional type of problem.

      Your last point is complete nonsense because fitness isn’t related to IQ and none of those things are any sort of fact just an assemblage of weird opinions. Also your condescension by presenting the obvious as some sort of great wisdom is a bunch of bullshit. Thank your for contributing absolutely nothing to the conversation but your ignorance.

      December 29, 2013
      • Scientific evidence posits overweight is less desirable -able to do less things and shorter life. It seems wise that people would avoid it.

        December 29, 2013
      • If IQ is tied to body fat, explain Ben Franklin, Lance.

        December 29, 2013
      • Also, I call bullshit on the claim that being overweight always leads to being able to “do less things.” I’m fat, and in my lived experience– not internet conjecture– I’ve never once had my weight render me incapable of doing a damn thing I wanted to do. I can swim, hunt, fish, this summer I did some low-level free climbing. In fact, the only thing stopping me from doing everything I want to do in life are health problems not related to weight– but which cause more weight gain through a combination of decreased mobility and medication.

        I guess I just wasn’t smart enough to rewrite my genetic code and erase those diseases, though. Maybe you’re right. It’s all the fat around my brain. I, and all other fat people in the world, will work harder to impress you, Lance.

        December 29, 2013
      • Okay
        Okay

        BMI CALCULATORS ETC ARE ALL FARCE. Thought I’d put that out there as this comment reminded me, they do not take bone structure or muscle mass into consideration are are therefore ridiculous. Just so noone else gets to feel crap like I did when I used one

        January 1, 2014
  57. I’m breaking my own internet rule and reading the comments, entirely so I can skip to wherever Jenny puts the smackdown on people who didn’t actually read her article and try to fat-shame anyway. It’s been great entertainment so far.

    December 28, 2013
  58. Gianna
    Gianna

    Hi. Firstly, I agree with a lot of what you’re saying here. However, and don’t stop reading now, I don’t believe JL is shaming thinner women or claiming to be a fat woman. Also, if this word is so destructive, let’s stop using it–fat is a substance not an adjective, although it has been used this way for so long. I believe JL is sending the message that she is in charge of her body, which yes, is naturally thin. By saying that she’s hungry or loves food a lot, which is what she is saying in all of the gifs you’ve posted, she is by no means saying “those skinny bitches suck” or “i’m fat, watch me eat.” She’s simply claiming she loves food (who doesn’t– it’s fucking great) and that she won’t take anyone’s criticism on what her body looks like. Which means, let’s let it go and let her do her thing, as we should do for everyone. It’s no business what any one does with their time, money, food, etc. and especially their body! So again, I understand your ideas here, but let’s be careful of the words and claims you are making about someone.

    December 28, 2013
    • I didn’t stop reading– I don’t have a problem with actual dialogue. 😀

      My main problem with JLaw’s comments aren’t the comments themselves, but the way the internet has run with them. Although she did, in fact, call herself “obese” by Hollywood standards (which is absurd, considering the number of overweight character actors in Hollywood), and she said that if she were too thin, she wouldn’t look like a person, it’s the internet that has built her up as a fat acceptance icon. Unfortunately, she’s continued to roll with it, and it’s now snowballing to the point that when an actual fat person objects to her icon status, they’re told to shut up and be grateful that someone “gets it.”

      As for not using the word fat, well… why not? It’s not a bad word, anymore than tall, short, thin, or hairy. When people say (as Jennifer Lawrence and Tyra Banks have recently said) that we shouldn’t call people fat, what they’re saying is that fat is an insult, because fat is a horrible thing to be, when it’s not. It’s just… it’s just being fat.

      A lot of fatties, myself included, have no problem self applying the word as a descriptor for our sizes and identities, so to be told by conventionally attractive people that we should be ashamed of the word and never use it, so that other conventionally attractive people don’t get their feelings hurt, is really upsetting. It’s a situation where once again, the feelings of a conventionally attractive person are more important than the feelings of a person who is actually fat. This is based in a very deeply ingrained belief that fat people are worth less, or have less humanity, than average sized people.

      And as for “making claims” about people, I don’t see how I’ve made claims about Jennifer Lawrence as a person, just that her popularity is built, in part, on the idea that she’s a radical body acceptance advocate. I’m a JLaw fan, more of her as a person than of her movies, but I believe that no matter how much we love something, we have to be realistic about its/their flaws. If I had written this post and said, “JLaw is doing all of this on purpose because she hates fat people!” that would be a claim. But it would also be ridiculous and completely false. All I’m doing here is pointing out that her statements aren’t as universally empowering as Tumblr en masse would like to believe.

      I hope this didn’t come off stridently, because it’s not meant to sound that way. I really do enjoy discussion, even if someone doesn’t agree with what I’m saying. But some other comments on this post have crossed major lines, and I feel I might sound a bit defensive in all my replies now. 😀

      December 29, 2013
  59. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Isn’t the whole thing about being healthy? Jennifer Lawrence works out and is healthy. She displays a healthy image. It isn’t all about body acceptance. Being healthy should be a smidge more important than just accepting your body.

    December 28, 2013
    • It’s never about health. It is never, ever, ever, about health. If it were about health, the Atkins diet would have never been so popular.

      December 29, 2013
  60. lena
    lena

    Thank god someone is bringing this up. I used to love Jennifer but after hearing her repeatedly making ignorant remarks, i no longer call myself a fan. I am naturally thin and its due to a sickness i had when i was younger, so having someone like Jennifer Lawrence basically say that im not a REAL WOMAN or person makes me want to tell her to ‘Fuck Off’. A body type does not define you and all these people putting her on Pedestal are just ecouraging her shaming skinny people. And its all coming from someone who isnt evem fat, im always seeing people praise her body. Shes the one who is calling herslef fat. Sorry but she needs to quit the quirky ditzy blonde act, because it makes her sound like an idiot and i honestly do not want to believe she is that dumb.

    December 29, 2013
  61. I shouldn’t have read the comments. I’m sorry, Jenny, that you have to deal with people with such poor reading comprehension.

    My favorite arguments are the ones that go “But JLaw is a fat woman! She’s obese by Hollywood standards!” and in the same breath go “We shouldn’t be applying Hollywood’s standards to women’s bodies and JLaw helps because she speaks against it!” So…are we following Hollywood standards or not? Also, her saying that she’s the only one in Hollywood without “anorexia rumours” is kinda insulting to her fellow actors, isn’t it? *theatrical whisper* For the people in trawling the comments section who are a bit slow, that’s thin-shaming. See, cause everyone’s who’s thin must be anorexic and JLaw is the only actress in Hollywood who likes to eat. Literally no other actress other than her loves food.

    Oh, another excellent argument: “She’s only speaking for herself! She’s only human! At least she’s trying to be body-positive.” Well, the Insane Clown Posse tried to lecture us on the wonders of life and see how well that turned out. That’s the thing–these people don’t know what they’re talking about. That’s the main point of Jenny’s article: THAT JLAW DOESN’T KNOW WHAT SHE’S TALKING ABOUT. And yeah, she’s free to speak for herself, but keep in mind that she has millions of people hanging on to every word she says and taking it for body-positivity. JLaw knows this; she has acknowledged several times the fact that she is considered a role model, therefore she should know she has the responsibility to watch what she says and educate herself. It’s not very inspiring for young girls when yet another one of their role models is dictating that the “realness” of a woman depends on the type of body she has. It doesn’t help young girls eat healthy either when an actress is constantly pointing out how much food she eats (or doesn’t eat), once again alienating food and portraying it as something special or an “indulgence” instead of something that’s supposed to be inherent and commonplace in our everyday life.

    Yeah, I don’t think JLaw purposefully meant to shame anyone with her comments and people can give her a gold star for effort, I guess. The problem is JLaw often doesn’t know what she’s talking about. She’s been called fat by some, sure, but again, she’s fat BY HOLLYWOOD STANDARDS. Meaning she has to deal with consequences of her size by Hollywood standards, but not by real-life standards. She may be denied some roles because of her size and her refusal to diet (it’s also funny how people in the comments are defending JLaw by advocating diet and healthy eating when JLaw herself has said that she refuses to diet), but she will never face consequences for being her size outside of that.

    If you want to claim that she represents fat people and the problems they face, she has to actually be a fat person–a REAL-LIFE fat person, not a Hollywood one.

    December 29, 2013
  62. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Thank you for pointing this out to me, I hadn’t honestly realized. The fandom is out of control though. You can practically see that from the hate comments on this. People are allowed to have opinions and make statements about the “thing” you like/love/adore/dream about/consider your spirit animal/write about…. Whether their opinion is good or bad. Welcome to the real world, people.

    December 29, 2013
  63. Whit
    Whit

    Listen, I’ve been a big girl my entire life. And I don’t take offense to anything this girl says. Someone has to let young girls know that they don’t have to be ashamed of how they look. Since you explained why actual fat people can’t stand up and say it, I think it’s nice that Jennifer Lawrence has made it her platform. Also, as a grown woman, I don’t look up to this girl. She is speaking to young girls. Teaching them to be proud of who they are, no matter the size. The young girls she is speaking to are not analyzing every little thing she says. They look up to her, and they hear her accepting them. They need that. I appreciate her for it. I don’t need her to validate me. I’m grown.

    December 29, 2013
    • First off, big girl secret handshake. 😀

      I don’t need her to validate me, either. I’m a fan of self validation. But think about what you just wrote: “The young girls she is speaking to are not analyzing every little thing she says.” If they’re not thinking about what she’s saying, they’re still internalizing what she’s saying. So when she says she’d rather “look like a person” with more meat on her bones, they’re internalizing the unspoken– that you only look like a person if you’re a certain size. If she’s saying, “It should be illegal to call someone fat,” they’re still internalizing the unspoken message that being called fat is the worst thing possible, because being fat is the worst thing possible.

      It might be momentarily empowering for her to say these things, but her remarks are still reinforcing negative body images, rather than subverting them. She’s doing far better than most people in Hollywood, but it’s a pretty low bar in terms of promoting acceptance at any size.

      December 29, 2013
      • anonymous
        anonymous

        I can’t help feeling like we’re misinterpreting her, “I’d rather look chubby on screen and like a person in real life” quote. You’re saying that what we should be gleaming from the statement is “you only look like a person if you’re a certain size”, when “JLaw” (first and probably last time I will use that abbreviation), I think, is talking about the two sets of standards apparent in our culture. Hollywood, no surprise, seems to abide by a ridiculous, and seemingly “unreal” standard of appearance. The statement is a criticism of Hollywood, not on herself or skinny, fat, chubby, or any self-validating woman that might associate herself with a particular “group”.

        “It should be illegal to call someone fat.” It should also be illegal to call someone “retarded”, “fag”, “queer” or fill-in-your-disrespectful-and-hate-filled-word-here. It has nothing to do with what the word means literally, but the non-acceptance that it implies. Since we’re all about ubiquitous acceptance.

        December 29, 2013
      • No, I totally get that she’s critiquing Hollywood, but her statement absolutely can be interpreted as meaning thin people don’t look “like a person.” There are thin women commenting on this post who felt that was out of line, regardless of her intent, and I think by dismissing her statement as, “well, she didn’t mean to insult them,” it’s pushing their concerns aside to make way for the status quo again.

        As for your other point, as a fat person, I don’t mind the word “fat,” even most of the time when it’s coming at me in a derogatory way. Because I can look at that and say, “That’s it? That’s all you’ve got? The worst thing about me is that I’m fat?” But I understand and respect the fact that not everyone does feel that way. However, I think when “Don’t call people fat” is coming from someone who isn’t fat, it can begin to feel a little bit like, “Don’t call me fat *because I’m not fat* and I don’t want people think of me as fat,” when the point is really that in a world where fat people were treated like they had some amount of humanity, it wouldn’t be an insult in the first place. Again, probably not the intent behind the statement, but it’s still worth examining critically when it’s being embraced by the public.

        December 29, 2013
      • anonymous
        anonymous

        I’ll concede to that. Skinny women can object to her comment if they feel it crosses a line, but as an average weight male I can’t say that I see the issue. I’ve never been fat (aside from as an infant). Nor have I been really, unhealthily skinny (which is, I think, the quality we’re meant to be discussing) (although I have been scrawny). I can, though, also see why people are so defensive of her in these comments, because “body-shaming” somehow implies intent to hurt or diminish, which isn’t the case, and I think that’s more of an issue with your title and abrasive writing style.

        I like the points you make in your article, although I could personally do without the title or defensive language. Painting Jennifer Lawrence as “Celebrity Fat Person of the Year” is inaccurate and unproductive, but I think she and her fan base is hitting home on at least one side of the conversation, which is that appearance, especially in regards to weight, shouldn’t matter. At all. Not even when discussing the destructive power of a word that might apply to you. I don’t care that you’re fat. I’m not going to call you fat, in person or otherwise, because I don’t care about your weight and I think it’s rude to talk to you about it, and seeing as JL thinks it’s rude to do so too indicates that she doesn’t think her own feelings more important than yours.

        “It’s a situation where once again, the feelings of a conventionally attractive person are more important than the feelings of a person who is actually fat. This is based in a very deeply ingrained belief that fat people are worth less, or have less humanity, than average sized people.” I don’t happen to think this is true, but I have nothing to support it, so I’ll just say that I disagree.

        December 29, 2013
      • Sophie
        Sophie

        you say “I’ve never been fat”, so I would suggest that that is why you don’t think it’s true. and that is, I’m afraid, your thin privilege. I am fat, and I do think it’s true, as it’s reinforced for me every day of my life that I am less than a person, that I don’t count, that I can’t expect the same things as other people and don;t deserve to, because I’m so ugly. Every interpersonal interaction I have reinforces this truth for me. every man that goes ‘I could never dream of getting to know you as a person because your body is too repulsive’. every clothes shop that says ‘ we only wish to cater for less than half the population, capitalism and business sense be damned.’ every person on the bus that sighs if you sit next to them, no matter how much effort you make to fold yourself up and not impinge on their space. etc. Everyone thinks they need to tell me, too, as if they think the world hasn’t already told me time and time and time again.

        December 30, 2013
  64. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Speaking of Melissa McCarthy, does no one remember when Rex Reed have her a scathing review based solely on her looks and it became a big social media thing? How everyone joked to Melissa’s defense? Because Melissa McCarthy is awesome at what she does and it’s about her comedic talent that makes America love her? She became an “overnight” sensation based on her abilities as an actor. People love her for that. And when she was taken to the wringer by an old bastard, America defended her too. It wasn’t okay to the masses.

    December 29, 2013
  65. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Took too.. Not joked.

    December 29, 2013
  66. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Please don’t speak for “fat girls” everywhere. You’re not me and I don’t appreciate you co-opting my experience of life as an obese women to score points.

    December 29, 2013
    • Excuse the fuck out of me, but I AM FAT. Don’t you DARE tell me that I’m co-opting YOUR experience by sharing mine, or that I need your fucking permission to share my own frustrations or opinions on the subject. You aren’t the emperor of fat people, so get over yourself. I don’t even fucking know you to “co-opt” your experience. I’ll speak all goddamned day about my experience as a fat woman, and not to “score points,” but because I want this shit to change so that women who do feel victimized by this incessant bullshit– be they skinny or fat or in between– won’t feel that way anymore.

      And pro-tip, when I said “body shaming to fat girls everywhere,” I wasn’t presuming that fat girls everywhere feel like the JLaw fandom is body shaming them. I’m straight up saying that the JLaw fandom is body shaming them, whether individual fat girls agree or not. The statements the fandom celebrates do reinforce our cultural standards and I refuse to view that as subjective. If you want to support false empowerment to make yourself feel better in the moment, that’s your problem, but it damn sure isn’t mine.

      December 29, 2013
  67. Andrea
    Andrea

    Hi Jenny,

    I know for the most part the response to this post has been frustrating for you, but I wanted to let you know that the positive comments here had a big impact with me. They gave me a lot of courage when I needed it this week. Getting off the bus to NYC, the woman behind me started yelling at me for putting my seat back the whole ride (I was sleeping.). In Captain Awkward style, I said “You are being extremely rude and there’s really no call for that” and proceeded to ignore her…until she started calling me fat and saying that if I needed more room I should have bought two seats. Even though it had nothing to do with me putting my seat back, another day this might have made me ashamed, even started to cry. But because of the body acceptance thought I’ve been exposed to through you, I just smiled. I was happy with myself and my behavior, it was this women who was unhappy and she didn’t have the power to make me feel bad.

    So don’t let the trolls get you down, because there are people you are getting through to and we need you.

    December 29, 2013
    • The seats don’t even go that far back, damn lady.

      I’m glad she didn’t make you cry.

      December 29, 2013
  68. Calz
    Calz

    Awesome. I couldn’t even name the feeling, and you come and put it into words so precisely 🙂 great text, clean arguments, no heat. Awesome 🙂

    December 29, 2013
  69. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Very, very interesting article. I agree with what is said. The hypocrisy which we utilize to judge celebrities is terrible. Jennifer Lawrence loves to eat and it’s a cute quirk we admit, but if someone like McCarthy said that we’d add them to the epidemic of obesity! I wonder the same thing about labeling women as “sluts”, why is there such a double standard? For instance, Miley Cyrus sings something sexual and is such a “slut”, but Beyonce does and is “our queen”, a “classy, perfect lady”. Just a thought!

    December 29, 2013
    • I agree with you, except for the thing about comparing Miley to Beyonce. I’ve noticed that, at least in mainstream (read: white) feminist circles, Miley is forgiven for all manner of sins specifically because of her overt sexuality and promotion of rape culture, but Beyonce has written songs with actual feminist messages and been “called out” by people who feel she’s “harming” the feminist movement.

      December 29, 2013
  70. Can I actually tell you how stupid this is? She might have been called fat before she was famous! I have a 21.5 BMI yet I have been called fat by my family and people at school. Take your words and shove them up your ass with an unlubricated horse cock!

    December 29, 2013
    • It must be really hard for you to be CALLED fat. Probably harder than it is for other people to actually BE fat. I weep my tears of lard for your oppression, and I hope one day a monument is erected to your bravery.

      The monument will be in the shape of an unlubricated horse cock.

      December 29, 2013
      • I wasn’t asking for a monument you asshole. I was making a point that she might actually think she’s fat. I used to think I was fat for the longest time because of what my family and other people said. I felt the same pain for the longest time.

        December 30, 2013
      • You did not feel the same pain. You felt pain, but it was definitely not the same thing as the pain and discrimination that fat people experience. And you sound ignorant for comparing the two.

        December 30, 2013
    • Nothing shows intellectual superiority like co-opting another group’s disprivilege and making like you’re the real victim, and uttering rapey, vulgar threats while doing so.

      I diagnose that you spend entirely too much time obsessing about horse cock, and how beautifully thin you are compared to those ‘real’ fatties. Perhaps you should seek out a therapist who can treat you for your zoophilic and narcissistic tendencies?

      December 30, 2013
      • Obviously you don’t understand the Malcolm Tucker reference there. But I am not a narcissist, in fact, if you knew anything about me, I am anything but. I am as much a victim as you are. We both share the same mentality of low self esteem because of our weight and what people have said about it. It isn’t the adipose itself that is miserable, it’s the way people negatively view it that is what makes a person miserable, they way they make being fat as the worst thing you can be. Also, about that therapist, I already have a psychiatrist and psychologist because of people fucking me up, and people calling me fat is the least of my problems. Also, I don’t need to censor myself for your comfort. Later bitch.

        December 30, 2013
    • Sophie
      Sophie

      as a fat person, how do you think I feel to know that being compared to me makes you feel pain? you’re literally telling me that I am so disgusting that you can’t bear the thought that anyone might compare you to me, and you base this on how I look, and no other quality. How would you feel if someone said something like that about some aspect of you?

      and what do you mean by ‘thinking you’re fat?’ Did you honestly believe yourself to be the size of, say, Melissa McCarthy (since we’re using her as a go-to fat woman example) while actually being a similar size to Jennifer L? Or did you think that you were ‘fatter than acceptable’? The comparative-er being very important here,

      When I was thin, I used to think the same thing, that being 2 pounds heavier than someone else made me fat, but it was a completely different kind of definition of ‘fat’ than actually being fat, ie, a significant amount bigger than average. They’re not comparable. Yes, unrealistic body image pressure is hellish at any size, but Jenny’s article is PRECISELY ABOUT how being a few pounds above the societal standard is not ‘fat’ and is being coopted as ‘fat’ and thereby denying actual fat people any legitimacy at all.

      December 30, 2013
  71. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    …Just read your profile and yeah, I don’t think you yourself really care about being polite, so I won’t hold myself back;;

    ..I’m pretty sure you’re just offended because you’re fat (as you yourself said so) and cannot eat as much as you want without people judging you.

    Jennifer Lawrence never called herself fat; she knows she’s not. “In Hollywood, I’m considered obese.” She’s calling herself obese to Hollywood standards!

    What is the problem with loving to eat? A lot of people love eating. Eating gives you pleasure. But you need to know how to control it. You can eat as much as you want, but stay healthy! You must know what kinds of food to eat. Sure, have McDonald’s, but only once in a while!

    What she defends is to be happy with yourself and not bother with what “everyone” thinks is beautiful. Don’t fall under those standards.

    And I’ve seen her live and stuff and heck, she’s chubby alright. She’s not skinny, nor fat; she’s “full” (as we’d say in PT), definitely “overweight” for Hollywood standards.

    So stop making up words from no where and putting them in people’s mouths and man, if you have issues (for real… health issues), instead of blaming it on others and finding faults, go get help and be conscious of what you’re doing.

    PS: it’s really important for us to hear these people talking because there really are non-fat people who aren’t really fat and think they’re fat but they really aren’t, because they don’t really know how life out there is.

    December 29, 2013
    • I’m pretty sure you know absolutely dick and shit about me as a person. You don’t know anything about my self image, motivation, or eating habits. You do not know how I feel about eating (heads up, I love food and accept the consequences). Do not patronize me and tell me to “have McDonald’s, but only once in a while!” Do not try to give me weight loss advice when I have asked for none. I am comfortable with myself, healthy at my size, and have never once indicated in this post or the comments that I’m looking for pointers on how to make a life change. No, I cannot prove this to you, but I don’t have to. I do not owe you an explanation or details about my “issues.” You have to take it at face value that I know myself better than you do. You have no power to define me.

      As for it being really important for non-fat people to have their appearance validated, well, you’re right. It’s way more important for people in the middle to have a false sense of empowerment without having to choose their words with more care, rather than in a way that reinforces unhelpful, actively destructive messages.

      If you ever try to offer unsolicited “health” or “diet” advice to another fat person again, I hope they eat you and wash you down with REGULAR Coke.

      December 29, 2013
      • Ender
        Ender

        No offense, I understand what your article said, but I generally disagree with your statements in this comment. Why are you so outraged about how society acts towards you while it is trying to give advice? It’s not a secret that being overweight is genuinely unhealthy. I find the need to point out that even people who seem to be healthy sizes can be extremely unhealthy, which in my mind is the ultimate issue. Whether you are fat or not (and being so generally is a solid indication) shouldn’t be the issue here. I think celebrities like her would be doing a much better job if they stated their views on weight as being HEALTHY or not. Not by size. The thing I disagree with most on what she has been saying is her (which you are also doing apparently) promotion of unhealthy eating habits – whether you accept your form or not.

        I understand that illnesses are exceptions, and even though genetics are taken as a decent excuse, they sort of aren’t.. You gain weight in the kitchen and strength at the gym. Neither me or the previous poster knows you, that’s understood. I’m assuming if you “love food and accept the consequences,” you accept your weight and image as it is, because of the edible pleasure that comes with. Telling someone you hope they “get eaten by a fat person and washed down with a REGULAR coke” is very childish. It’s wonderful to be comfortable with yourself, and I wish more people were.. but I also wish the world could be healthier and less promoting of fast food companies and monopolies like McDonalds or Nestle.

        I’m not trying to give you advice on weight loss (even though it is closely tied with health). I’m simply trying to address an issue I feel just as strongly about as your issue on self-confidence. I feel you are spreading as much damage as you feel her fans are spreading by saying things like the comment mentioned above. I just don’t understand how so many people indulge in a behavior that is both destructive for oneself as well as for the world – simply for a very brief satisfaction. Perhaps you are a genuinely healthy eater (or you believe yourself to be), but promoting the drinking of any soft drink to spite healthier(?) people giving advice is quite unhelpful to the world.

        December 30, 2013
      • Why am I outraged by a stranger presuming they know more about how I should make my life choices than I do? I don’t know. Why would anybody be offended by that? It’s so simple. Look: “I, a total stranger, know everything I need to about you and your life, in a far deeper, more thorough way than you do yourself, even though I formed this opinion in a few paragraphs of text on the internet. Since you are so helpless to steer your life and habits in the direction I deem acceptable, let me break it down for you Barney style, in the most insulting and condescending way possible, even though you never asked me for my opinion or engaged me, personally, in any way.”

        See that? That’s what you and Anonymous are doing. You are behaving this way to a stranger, in a public forum. And you have the gall to call another person “unhelpful to the world?” Do you ever get lightheaded off the fumes from other people’s second hand embarrassment, or are you so used to others feeling shame on your behalf that it doesn’t even bother you anymore?

        December 30, 2013
  72. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    i thought this article would open up people’s minds but oh my fucking god at the tons of stupid and ignorant comments, the people who insist on their wrong opinions and refuse to even listen to any voice other than theirs are the worst at least ignorant people are willing to listen and maybe one day learn the right thing. the person who wrote this article isn’t bashing anyone you still don’t get it jennifer lawrence is a famous person that means her voice is heard therefor she can’t be ignorant. without even noticing she implies ableism, sexism, body shaming, slut shaming, fat shaming, cisnormativity, cultural appropriation, internalized sexism, misogyny, heteronormativity, transphobia and a lot more things, she’s misusing using the word anorexia which is and eating disorder need i go on?? the article is so simple it said nothing about her being a bad actress or a bad person or even bad looking this isn’t about her this is about all the young people she’s brain washing everyday. she’s not either fat nor thin and what she did here was say that she’s the standard weight and nobody should be thinner or fatter than she is
    you still can’t see how wrong this is. if she had nothing good to say about body image she should of just stayed shut not everyone is walking around talking about their bodies, i know she had good intentions but she made it even worse to accept a kind of people you don’t have to bash other kinds. we were made to be different

    December 29, 2013
      • Thirded. We could generate enough electricity to power Belgium from the breeze generated by all those nitwits missing the point.

        December 30, 2013
  73. Anon
    Anon

    I was a little disturbed by this rant about Jennifer Lawrence and other women with similar body types. While Lawrence did say she is considered obese, she said it was according to Hollywood standards not the general population, ergo she’s not comparing herself to you.
    Also, many actors have to do extreme diets in order to get a role or in order to have a “considerable Hollywood body” which is obviously what she is referring to when talking about dieting. I highly doubt someone who is against (and worries) about being a type of role model that has fans who skip meals or who push themselves to the extreme in order to look like her, doesn’t support people who have to work out and diet due to a medical condition. In one of Lawrence’s quotes that you outlined above, she states: “What are you gonna do? Be hungry every single day to make other people happy? That’s just dumb.” She is referring to people who diet for the benefit of others rather than themselves. She obviously cares about her fans (for example, when she says “I don’t want little girls to be like, ‘Oh, I want to look like Katniss, so I’m going to skip dinner!’ That was something I was really conscious of…”) she wouldn’t want them to not diet (especially if they need to) just because she doesn’t want to herself.
    While some of her quotes may seem offensive or asympathetic to people of extreme weights (obese, or too thin alike), when read in context, it’s obvious to see that that is not what she meant & not how they truly come across. This post is an over manipulation of Jennifer Lawrence’s quotes, putting blame and criticism where it is not needed. While I may not be the thinnest person around and while I dislike when skinny people complain about their weight etc, I disagree with this post and it’s obtuse statements.

    December 30, 2013
  74. SG Booklover
    SG Booklover

    I confess, I was completely riveted by the JLaw drama here on this blog. I debated on whether to throw in my two cents and ultimately decided to go for it. Because that’s what comment sections are all about! I think Jenny presents a very interesting point in her post. I agree there’s a double standard for identical statements made by a thin woman vs a fat woman, and that perhaps hearing a thin woman “stand up for fat” can be very off-putting to the women who struggle with weight. Many times, there’s more to a weight issue than just not exercising, especially if the weight gain was the result of illness or injury. So I’m very sympathetic to anyone struggling to lose weight or with negative body issues!

    That being said, I would like to throw a nod to JLaw for her statements. While a pleasing physical appearance can go a long way in getting a job, most professions aren’t in the same league as film and television. There is definitely pressure to be a certain body type in order to have a successful acting career. And for every one person who doesn’t want to look the part, there are thousands of other people who will. Makes for a very competitive industry! I have had to compete against others for a job before, but not at the film & TV level where looks often are a person’s resume.

    Jennifer Lawrence has said she was pushed to lose weight by her employers. This is bullshit for any industry, but very few women have the nerve to say it publicly when their own future jobs may be on the line. The beauty of JLaw’s comments is the massive FUCK YOU she gave to those who tried to make her feel bad about herself. They tried to shame her about her appearance, and she flipped the criticism back on her critics. Yes, it’s possible she wouldn’t have had the confidence to do that if she was 50 lbs overweight and her career was stalling. Then again, maybe she would. Women are badasses so I try not to underestimate them.

    Either way, I’m going to give the girl a hell yeah. Just goes to show whether you’re a size 4 or 44, odds are strong someone is going to try to shame you about the way you look at some point. She reminds us that we all have the option of calling bullshit when they do.

    December 30, 2013
  75. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    As an 85 lb. teenager I find it somewhat off-putting hearing Jennifer Lawrence constantly talk about food and how she is so “overweight”. I eat healthy and exercise but I’ve had a problem maintaining a healthy weight since I was little. She constantly talks about how it is better to eat tasty things then be thin when really not everyone has a choice when it comes to what they weigh. Kind of gives me the impression that if I met her she would laugh and tell me I need to eat a burger or something lol

    December 30, 2013
  76. Bridget
    Bridget

    If someone is thin, so what. If they’re larger, so what. We’re all still people. I don’t think Jennifer is saying that anyone larger than her is fat, because that’s simply not true. Some people just can’t shed weight, and that’s fine. Other people can’t gain weight, and that’s also fine. We really should just ignore what the media says, and yes I know that can be pretty difficult, but we only believe what we let ourselves believe. We should stop looking at other people (not just celebrities) and how “perfect” their bodies are, and start looking at how perfect our own bodies are. We’re all made differently, which makes us each special. I know how cheesy and cliche that sounds, but it’s true. The acting/music industry just wants to make money, and making people feel bad about themselves is one of their ways. So let’s all just stop worrying and stressing about what they think perfection is, and just focus on how you see your own body. It’ll make you much happier in the long run.

    December 30, 2013
  77. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    I don’t think it gives the author a good image when she bashes anyone who doesn’t agree with her opinion (not to say any one person is right or wrong). She knew what she was getting into when she wrote this, so why is she so defensive about backlash she knew was coming her way?

    December 30, 2013
    • Good question. If you go through the comments, you’ll see there are times when someone disagrees with the points made in the post and they keep their comments about the post. In those cases, I don’t ‘bash” anybody. I’m completely open to discussion.

      However, some posters, in the course of disagree with me, then presume I am jealous, lazy, unhealthy, a victim, etc, and wish to scold me for these qualities. Some of this is parsed in a “polite” way, but it is never polite to tell someone their opinion is an expression of jealousy over not being thin enough, and there’s no polite way to offer someone unsolicited health advice or critique. I don’t feel the need to respond politely to someone who says all fat people should die so she doesn’t have to look at them, or who tries to condescendingly tell me not to eat McDonald’s all the time. If this post had been about me asking, “What do you think of fat people?” perhaps I would feel differently.

      As for knowing what I was getting into, this blog has a fairly steady readership of around 10k hits per day. It’s not a huge enterprise. But somehow it ended up on Tumblr and my traffic tripled in a single day. Almost all of the responses that resulted were astoundingly negative, and some were personal attacks. What you’re suggesting is that I should sit back and just take it, because after all, the most important thing is that I should keep a “good image” and sell more books. But I would argue that I wouldn’t have a very “good image” if I consistently preached self-acceptance and self-respect, then sat back and took blatant abuse because strangers on the internet felt entitled to hurl it at me. That would further perpetuate the idea that fat people just have to take whatever anyone dishes out, because we’re not worthy of good treatment.

      I will respond to people based on how they approach me. Telling me to go on a diet is just a really great way to get off on the wrong foot.

      December 30, 2013
  78. piano
    piano

    DISCLAIMER: Wow. I don’t know that an opening–bolded part–has alerted me more quickly that the content below would probably be dickish rather than informative. This was not the case, but that definitely colored my reading of it.

    But you make some really great points here. Like the fact that Melissa McCarthy simply could not make these comments without inciting hateful articles telling her to work out. Jennifer’s not perfect. I get that. People who hero worship tend to not see those things and/or dismiss them. She says some things that make other people feel like their body is not okay. Fair point. However, you make it sound like you get to decide who is “fat” and anyone else who has these issues is not justified and should shut up. That’s not helpful. I got that more from the comment section than the post, though.

    Basically, you bring some valid information to the table, but I *thought* you were trying to convince to maybe rethink the flawless view of JLAW. Instead you come off as complaining to people who already agree with you. It feels good, but isn’t a persuasive argument.

    December 30, 2013
  79. WHO CARES!?
    WHO CARES!?

    Holy shit. This article is trash.

    You had to pick one of the most obese actresses in Melissa McCarthy, who is considered morbidly obese outside of Hollywood as well, as a counterpoint for no real reason other than to show that JLaw isn’t as fat as she could be- whoopee. There is a true distinction between being an anorexic actress starving herself for a role- and a healthy young woman who stands up when she is been told she needs to lose weight to fit in to the prototypical Hollywood actress mold.

    You should be supporting her encouragement of positive self-image, just because she’s good looking doesn’t mean she is shaming those who aren’t as attractive. Enjoy your jealousy in some other manner, please.

    December 30, 2013
    • “who is considered morbidly obese ”

      Could you give me your medical qualifications for making this statement? I mean, since “morbidly obese” is a medical diagnosis and not just a synonym for “fat people you think are ugly”?

      “as a counterpoint for no real reason”

      Yeah, totally. There’s no reason Trout would have picked an actual fat woman who is not allowed to be positive about her fat body, as a counterpoint to a slim actress that only insane people consider fat but who has become to many of her fans the voice of fat-positive people. No idea what was going through Jenny’s mind there.

      You came to this post determined to read it as a slam against Jennifer Lawrence. Therefore your ability to read the words on the screen was irretrievably deactivated by bigotry (and your all too obvious fat hatred.)

      Why don’t you ‘enjoy’ your loathing of us fatties somewhere else? Preferably while on a short walk off a long cliff?

      December 30, 2013
    • First of all, thank you for reducing your entire argument to “LOL U JELLI?” so I can dismiss it immediately. You don’t know me. You have no idea if I’m satisfied with my life or jealous of someone else’s.

      Second, stop flinging “anorexic” around like it just means “thin.” Anorexia is a disease that kills people. You wouldn’t say, “There is a true distinction between an actress who looks like a cancer patient,” would you?

      No, never mind. You probably would.

      December 30, 2013
  80. jmi
    jmi

    She never called herself fat. She said Hollywood likes to believe she’s heavier than she “should be”, and what a crock that is. If she offends you, you need to get a life.

    I say that as a 200 plus lb woman, who is healthy, eats very little junk food (and no processed food of any kind for over a year), but still carries a ton of body fat. Dieting hasn’t worked for me, so I choose to focus on healthy fuel, and accept myself as I am. And I don’t waste time or oxygen whining about how offended I am about someone else’s opinions.

    The culture of entitlement and offense is staggeringly idiotic.

    December 30, 2013
    • Good for you. It’s almost as if your experience is not my experience, and we are not a fat person mind meld. Imagine!

      December 30, 2013
  81. David Newhouse
    David Newhouse

    I’m just trying to throw an opinion into the ring here and to speak without too much emotion.

    I think all thinkpieces like this are basely misguided. Your point about McCarthy is interesting. The treatment of her at the hands of the media is worth exploring. But you cheapen your argument by only using it to strengthen a deeply misguided post about Lawrence. You also do McCarthy a detriment by the fact that you clearly cherry-picked her quotes to strengthen your point and I don’t think they’re on the whole indicative of her relationship with her body image.

    Lawrence is making honest, opinion-based statements about the way she feels about body image. When she makes the comments related to actresses needing to be stick thin on screen – she isn’t attacking people who are thin naturally, she’s commenting on the specific Hollywood culture. Which she is a part of and has every right to comment on (with much more authority than either you or I). And she never says an ill word against fat people – all of that offense is extrapolated. And it’s not intended by her, there’s no indication that it’s felt by her, and fans who laud her for her comments shouldn’t have to feel vulnerable to charges of body shaming because she dared to discuss body image publicly, they dared to support her, and someone, somewhere along the way added invisible subtext and got offended.

    Jennifer Lawrence’s actions are positive. She’s voicing an opinion because she feels that something is wrong with the system she is a part of. You, by contrast, are the one shaming her with a litany of negatives. You offer no positive suggestions, only shames of her presumed missteps. The place I found this most appalling was in your link to “Your Fave is Problematic”, a blog which seems to have been created solely to prove that there is no way to live your life without offending someone.

    When did the definition of Feminism become women fighting women and telling them how wrong they are? Are we really so sensitive that we have to extrapolate everything someone says to an infinitive degree and sort out all the wrongs, all the shaming, and all the offense – no matter how derivative to the actual comment and intent? And more importantly, in behaving this way, is there ANY hope for open discourse about the issues that divide us? What discourse could ever have hope of passing that test?

    December 30, 2013
    • Okay, I’m going to answer just like, one of your points, because I’m exhausted by this post. It’s nothing personal against you, I just feel like I’m saying the same things over and over again without being heard, but you posted in good faith, so I do want to address at least your last paragraph.

      The idea that it is divisive and harmful to feminism to critically examine the actions of women who are in the public eye or considered role models is a fallacy most often propped up by proponents of mainstream (now often referred to as “white”) feminism, and generally we see this allegation coming out in defense of the mainstream feminist darling of the moment. For example, when Miley Cyrus treats black women like sexual objects and imitates black culture in the hopes of appearing dangerous or edgy, and women of color object to this, and mainstream/white feminists will argue that those objections are divisive and harmful to feminism. “But Miley is out there, showing that she’s sexually free, and that’s a good message to young girls!” But by dismissing any critical opinion, they’re saying what matters those outside the mainstream isn’t important, but maintaining the good feelings enjoyed by the majority is. And any discussion or dissension among women, no matter the reason, is unsupportive and destructive

      If we’re to apply the “don’t question other women’s actions/words” rule to someone like, off hand here, Michelle Bachman, we’d have to say, “To be feminist, you must never question her anti-woman, anti-choice statements, and accept them as inherently feminist, else risk dividing all women, everywhere.”

      As for the idea that we should consider intent, rather than actual statement, I would suggest checking out the article at this link: http://www.shakesville.com/2011/12/harmful-communication-part-one-intent.html

      December 30, 2013
  82. Melissa
    Melissa

    Adventure Time freaks me out a little.

    Now that we have that out of the way, hear! hear! Ms. Trout. Or is it “here! here!”? Either way, I applaud this blog. I think it’s incredibly sad that Lawrence feels like she may be fat or that people think she’s fat so she’s going to trump them by saying it herself. You’re absolutely right that the whole thing is a representation of real problems in our society and the way we view women.

    I am sure that Lawrence really does have the best intents in her comments. She is a fantastic actress and seems like a genuine and sincere person. I think most of us get that your blog wasn’t about her but a bigger problem of sizeism within our culture. Don’t sweat the Tumblr crew. Everyone loves to criticize.

    December 30, 2013
  83. After I praised Jennifer Lawrence for her words in a tweet, a friend of mine directed me to your post. I am profoundly grateful that she did.

    I think you’ve hit the nail right on the head about the way that Lawrence’s words have been vaunted, and about the issues that her thin privilege present when she speaks up against Hollywood’s disordered attitude toward body size and shape. As you do in this piece, I can give her the credit she’s due, but when her words on weight and eating are juxtaposed with her remarks on bisexuality, trans* people and mental illness (also brought to my attention by the friend who referred me here), the shine fades.

    Thank you for this, so much. It seems to be impossible for a fat person to post anything at all that challenges the dominant, bigoted paradigm without the sort of vitriol and imposition of unwanted advice that you’ve experienced here. Your voice, however, is vital to those of us who’ve been silenced, shut out or misrepresented simply because we don’t measure down to society’s demands. Perhaps this will give me the courage to attempt to talk about the issue of fat, representation and weightism again. And if your piece can do that to me, I can only imagine how many others who might have been too afraid to speak up in the midst of so many hostile comments might also be thus inspired.

    I’m following you here, if you don’t mind too much, though I’ve noted that your blog name and space might be changing. I hope that things can (or have) calm(ed) down here for you.

    December 31, 2013
  84. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    I do understand wha you’re saying, but Jennifer actually helped a lot of women too, you know?

    December 31, 2013
    • I know. I just wish other women were allowed to reach out like that, too. 🙂

      December 31, 2013
  85. Ash
    Ash

    What you don’t seem to realize is that Jennifer Lawrence admits to eaiting a lot and maintains a healthy weight is bdcause she works out! She claims that she wanted to make Katniss look strong and fit not skinny and underfed. She is encouraging girls to be a healthy weight, and says that dieting is not the way to go. She also encourages the notion that just because you’re built with curves and have big-bones, doesn’t mean you’re fat. Jennifer Lawrence encourages all different body weights and discourages dieting and starving yourself. Your article is very bias and only includes half-facts that support your side. Don’t diss JLaw because “you just like to hate things.”

    December 31, 2013
    • Congrats those are things Jennifer Lawrence has said. However, the people putting Jennifer Lawrence up on a pedestal as ‘acceptably overweight’ are the problem not Jennifer Lawrence herself though other things she has said are problematic.This has been your PSA and the true guide to reading this post.

      December 31, 2013
      • Christina A
        Christina A

        I truly do not think that anyone is putting her on a pedestal for being “acceptably overweight” – I don’t think anyone thinks she’s overweight at all. I think people are celebrating her (or putting her on a pedestal, if you like) for coming out strong against the overarching message in Hollywood that you have to be a size 0 to be truly successful. But I certainly don’t think anyone looks at her and says “yes, she’s (acceptably) overweight. but no one fatter than her allowed.”

        December 31, 2013
      • I think you might be surprised. I will preface this with I like JLaw. I liked her in Hunger Games I really enjoyed her in American Hustlers which I just saw today, but the fan culture around her is problematic. I understand she is shouting back against Hollywood and that a lot of these remarks are unscripted and off the cuff and maybe not indicative of her entire attitude. However, all of these remarks taken together which I see reblogged one after another on Tumblr and retweeted and such have caused this fan culture to spring up in such a way that she is put on a pedestal for being acceptably ‘a weight which is not overweight but is being treated as such by the fan culture’; to clarify what I said in brief before. This fan culture is thus scripting a dialogue of JLaw as a food lover and acceptable “fatty”, but of course the truth is that she isn’t fat at all and that’s the problem entirely (i.e. the truth that JLaw isn’t fat at all and the fan culture perception that she is breaking all these boundaries by saying she loves food and being perceived as a variety of overweight which is to say not ultra skinny). To say that ‘no one fatter allowed’ doesn’t happen is laughable because just look at the number of celebrities (females especially but it happens to men too like in the case of Brendan Frasier) who get lambasted for weight gain and are often the butt of ugly jokes and media coverage; to name just a few… Oprah, Carrie Fisher, Kirstie Alley, Kim Kardashian’s baby weight has been endlessly discussed recently, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Beyonce,and I’m sure the list could easily keep going. None of these women at their largest would be treated with dignity if they said the same things JLaw said already lambasted they would simply be further lambasted, and so the fan culture that embraces JLaw as fat acceptance when it’s really not is problematic because she is simply reinforcing the message that there are only certain acceptable levels of overweight and she fits into that category when the reality is she isn’t fat at all. It sucks because JLaw herself is falling victim to all these societal pressures going on so power to her for speaking up and trying to say something; however, the fan culture around her construing that as false acceptance is not and only further problematizes what is already a problem.

        January 2, 2014
  86. Mergle
    Mergle

    I have yet to see any evidence that the fan reaction to the healthy comments is body shaming. If the article is directed at the fandom, where’s the evidence of the alleged bad things the fans have done/said? Celebrating one persons comments does not automatically mean they are dismissing another’s.

    December 31, 2013
    • No, but celebrating comments that actually do shame people– thin or fat– is still shaming. And if you want evidence, why don’t you read some of the comments on this post from people, thin and fat, who actually felt a visceral negative response to Lawrence’s words? Will that be “evidence” enough that this meme of JLaw as fat girl superhero actually does harm some people?

      December 31, 2013
  87. What a very thoughtful post, I never thought or considered any of this. The MM quotes in comparison just make me sad. Thank you for writing this.

    December 31, 2013
  88. This seems like kind of a stretch. Someone who likes their body is not shaming anyone else who doesn’t look like them. *ginormous eye roll.*

    January 1, 2014
  89. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Guys, we’re missing a very important point here. Jennifer Lawrence is fat! Look at her face.

    January 1, 2014
  90. Ugh. I’m not American, but I do live in a Western culture where it’s supposedly attractive to be thin and considered hideously unhealthy to eat far more calories per day than is good for you without doing adequate physical activity to counteract what you eat (and then blame genetics for learning unhealthy eating habits at a young age). What we are bombarded with in New Zealand is images of American women dictating to us what we should and shouldn’t wear/think/say/do/act/dress/style/whatever. And so we just don’t watch any cheap, tawdry American TV shows because the majority of the world’s populace (who actually live outside the United States of the Center of the Universe) think the majority of Americans are silly, uneducated, self-important idiots who bombard us with their self-righteous crap on how we should think the same way they do about every conceivable topic on every available media. REAL women don’t have to be any size or shape or color or height or whatever. So stop watching TV and stop stalking celebrities online. You’ll have a much happier life interacting with REAL people instead – and you won’t be judged or judging. See, happier already :p

    January 1, 2014
    • alexandra
      alexandra

      I’m in complete and total awe of your capacity for logical disconnect. Like, really, does it hurt to contort yourself daily to fit into your own echo chamber of flawed logic? What does it look like in there? Is it sparkly? I bet it’s sparkly. Does math work in there, or does 2 + 2 = 475 or something like that?

      Ok, back to the topic at hand. Let me get this right: You’re sick of all of us cheap, tawdry, silly uneducated American’s who don’t talk to real people or have real lives because, HELLO, we are sooooo judgmental. Us. It’s us who are judgmental? Not you, who just called a whole nation of people a bunch of mean names because you don’t like our syndicated TV shows. We’re the judgmental ones who tell others how to live their lives, not you. Uh, ok.

      Seriously, thanks for the LOLs.

      January 1, 2014
  91. Melissa McCarthy and Rebel Wilson hit the headlines 2 weeks ago by making a “weight pact.” They have brought the issue to the forefront. Nobody who speaks in the public arena is protected from criticism.

    “Rebel and Melissa have known each other for five years and there’s a lot of love there. Neither one of them is trying to lose weight and they’ve formed this little support group to keep each other from falling into the skinny Hollywood trap. Obviously, they could both snap their fingers and lose the weight because of the resources they have available to them — which could include everything from personal trainers to Lap Band surgery — but right now they’re agreeing with each other that they have to hold the line and provide a positive image for overweight girls everywhere. There will be plenty of time for dieting years from now, but Rebel and Melissa are determined to stay at their current sizes for now.”

    I am overweight. I like all three actresses. I sure as hell don’t begrudge any of them for feeling the way they do about their bodies. Comparing McCarthy and Lawrence is a poor dichotomy. There is 20 years of experience between the two. McCarthy is my age. Weight is a different topic now than it was when we were Lawrence/Wilson’s age. All have rabid fandoms. Fandoms are problematic, period.

    I am raising 2 daughters. They are learning that your weight doesn’t define you as a person at the same time they are learning to eat healthy and exercise. I would rather have my kids grow up understanding that celebrities are NOT role models.

    January 1, 2014
  92. Okay
    Okay

    I think the comments in this article are a little unfair. Again, everyone has their opinion and I totally respect these comments and their writer, but i feel we should note that Jennifer is using her newfound fame in a very selfless and inspirational way, which I’m not sure many others would. It’s good for her to be a role model in today’s society, maybe it will be inspiration for girls both big and small to embrace who they are, or, if they are unhappy with their size, to do something as they feel they don’t have to go to extremes to be accepted anymore e.g a bigger woman doesn’t feel she has to diet or whatever until she becomes a size 6 UK or 0 USA in order to feel accepted. Lets just congratulate Jennifer for doing something worthwhile with her fame? I think she at least deserves a ‘pat on the back’ or star sticker for trying, huh? ;D *

    January 1, 2014
  93. Eulie
    Eulie

    I always said I couldn’t be famous because of the requirement to be thin. Like Jennifer, I enjoy the occasional fast food and would more than likely tell my manager, publicist, etc. to screw themselves while I scarfed down another Frosty. We do have a very subliminal message of “thin or die” in this country and it stinks. The most important thing is never thin or not thin, it’s health. You can quote the AMA all day about the dangers of extra weight, BMI, blah, blah, blah but I don’t consider it to mean anything. So if I am 170 pounds and 21% body fat yet my doctor says “You are healthy and I have no concerns for you at this time” then 170 it is. Body acceptance starts with emotional health. If you dont have that , you will never be at a healthy weight no matter what.

    January 1, 2014
  94. marknova
    marknova

    You’re being ridiculous. Seems pretty obvious jennifer Lawrence is just calling BS with regards to things directed at her body and not attacking any one specific person…and no doubt just shootin the shit. But here you are, just lookin foe shit to complain about. And yeah, if melissa mcarthy gave her veraion of this reaponse, i’m sure it would go over fine in tjis day and age, but i’m sure you’d find issue with that too. Give the girl a break. You on the other hand are thinking before spouting, so what’s you’re excuse for jumping to stupid conclusions, and not being humanly perceptive…clearly you will ALWAYS have issues with others’ opinons; I guess that’s why you write…textbook narcissist…then tack on a body image or cause for your narcissistic attitude and voila, annoying ramblings about what some ‘goodlooking persons’ comments might imply to all the ‘others’. Get over I yourself.

    January 1, 2014
    • Considering all of your complaints I think you are just looking for something to complain about.

      January 2, 2014
  95. Anonymous
    Anonymous

    Honestly, although i see where you are going. i personally dont think this is fair. She is thinking like every other girl in america thinks. She is of a certain weight and she thinks she is fat/chubby, i dont see you attacking skinny chicks that complain they are completely fat just because they have a very little jiggle in their skin even though they are skinnier than the average weight. If she sees herself as chubby then let her. People sometimes say things without thinking and although i know becoming a celebrity they get attacked for being a regular person in front of millions of people, or they say things to one person and their words get twisted beyond repair. And what makes you think being sick cant lead to becoming fat? You can get fat through genetics, psychological or many other things OTHER than losing self control and eating? I am a female close to three hundred pounds because of complete and utter stress in my life, i do not condone being overweight at all but people use the words ” overweight” or ”fat” so loosely its just sad. Because they are like 5lbs over the average weight they want to call themselves these words. Maybe she sees herself aw ”chubby” because maybe her family calls her chubby due to the fact that she eats the way she does if its true. You dong know what goes on behind closed doors, or what others put in her head. So to attack her for what she is saying, you are going to have to attack half the girls in america than because they think, say and do alot worse that make bigger people feel like crap.

    January 2, 2014
  96. Randomer
    Randomer

    This is totally unfair.
    When she was 16, she was told to do a bikini/almost nude photo shoot or she would lose her job! Little did she know, instead of using them for advertising or whatever they made them into a photo album and gave it too her as motivation to lose weight and try to show her that she was fat.
    She also had to move school several times because the bullying got so bad.
    She is in no way fat but she has reasons to feel chubby even though she isn’t.
    Also when she grew up it was ‘cool’ at her school to pretend to be anorexic and diet a lot, this is obviously then her impression of what young girls do and she is justtelling people to not do that.
    She never says skinny or thin is bad, she just knows that it is unrealistic for her too become a size zero unless she starves herself and quite rightly she isn’t willing to do that.

    January 2, 2014
  97. adria
    adria

    congrats, you just body shamed Jennifer Lawrence. you are such a hypocrit.

    January 2, 2014
    • Rachel
      Rachel

      What are you talking about?

      January 2, 2014
      • Obviously, saying she has a gorgeous body and is the conventional idea of beauty in our culture is somehow shaming and insulting.

        January 2, 2014
    • Elle
      Elle

      Thank you! You’re writing an article about how she’s “the textbook coke bottle figure” and all of this other rubbish… and, whether you noticed it or not, you’re bashing her for having the body she has – how is that fair? You go on a rant about how fat people feel the need to apologize for having to be seen. That’s not her fault, that’s something that person needs to work on. That’s a psychological issue. If you aren’t comfortable in your body, then do something to change that – whether it be therapy or changing your diet (as in, clean eating, etc..). If you are comfortable in your body, then that is all that matters. You’re perception of yourself is what matters… Not what others think about you.

      January 2, 2014
      • How is it bashing someone to point out they’re gorgeous? I am saying this woman is literally fulfilling the cultural ideal for beauty, and that’s bashing her?

        As for “it doesn’t matter what other people think of you,” come back and have a try with that when you’ve been discriminated against for your weight. When you go in to a store that’s hiring, desperate for employment, only to have the hiring manager tell you that you’re too fat to work in their store because they have to protect their brand. So they don’t even give you an application, and they laugh and talk about you with another employee while you’re walking out. You come back here and you tell me how the fat person in that situation is supposed “work on” that themselves. And even if you do go off and experience something like that and you still tell me that my perception of myself is all that matters, then I’m still going to call that bullshit. No matter how awesome I find myself– and believe me, I think I’m pretty great– that doesn’t matter whether or not I’m allowed, as a fat person, to have a voice on this issue.

        January 2, 2014
  98. i just came her to say that i lumping LOVE adventure time. both the show and the comics are MATHEMATICAL! that is all.

    January 2, 2014
    • YOU ARE IN YOUR ELEMENT! 😀

      January 2, 2014
  99. Drea
    Drea

    Thank you for putting into words why I have a problem with J. Law (other than the fact that I think she’s really overrated). It’s funny, people say her comments are empowering to other women, when I don’t feel empowered at all. I know other girls do, and that’s great! But to me, she’s basically rehashing that awful “real women have curves” saying.

    I mean, I’m a skinny girl. My body is oddly proportioned, but I’m scrawny for the most part. I have a fast metabolism and I have trouble gaining weight. I can eat like a pig when I want to without gaining a pound, that’s just the way my body is. But apparently I don’t look like a real woman because I don’t have enough curves. It’s just as bad as ridiculing Melissa McCarthy because of her weight. I shouldn’t have to gain weight to conform to society’s norms on what a “beautiful” body is, just like Melissa shouldn’t have to lose weight to please other people. It’s such a double-edged sword. We’re told to lose weight, but don’t lose too much weight or you won’t look like a real woman! Real women have curves, after all. But not too many curves, because nobody likes a fat slob.

    And people wonder why so many girls have issues with body image. Also, to the J. Law fandom: it’s perfectly okay to still love somebody while still acknowledging the problematic things they say. This article isn’t saying you should stop loving her and that she’s a horrible person, because she’s not. The author is simply trying to show you how some of things she says (not all, but SOME) aren’t as “body positive” as some may claim. That’s my take on it.

    January 2, 2014
    • That’s the idea. Like, it’s great that it’s empowering some people. Would it be such a stretch to modify the words we’re using to promote that empowerment, so that everyone is included? Apparently, judging from some of the reactions I’ve seen.

      January 2, 2014
  100. Linda
    Linda

    Since everyone has something to say here, maybe I should comment as well. I have been reading your blog for some time now but never commented, so I figure this post is just the one to start.

    So… who the fuck is Jennifer Lawrence?

    January 2, 2014
    • You have no idea how much that made me laugh, and I so needed it. I totally imagined you coming in here, looking around like, “Hey guys, what’s OH GOD WHAT IS HAPPENING IN HERE?”

      January 2, 2014
  101. The remarks here made toward Jenny are beyond disgusting, shame on you people speaking to another human being like that, you are a disgrace. And Jenny’s post is completely spot on, Jennifer Lawrence is NOT fat, she’s not even slightly overweight, so her comments are useless and actually quite insulting to women who are actually are big girls, and even more troublemaking to girls with various weight and eating issues, as Lawrence is thin herself but still claims herself to be fat, which can only convince other thin girls that they too are fat and should lose more weight. It’s a downward spiral and Jenny was right to post her thoughts on it. How dare the nasty trolls here spread their venom!

    January 2, 2014
    • Elle
      Elle

      So… just because you think she isn’t fat, it mean she doesn’t have self image issues, right?. Jenny can post her thoughts, but so can the people reading the article. This is the Internet after all.

      January 2, 2014
      • Unfortunately, thought wasn’t involved in about 80% of the comments posted.

        January 2, 2014
  102. If she was overweight with the same attitude you would be praising her. In my opinion that makes what you say rather hypocritical. I realize shes not a “fat actress” in your opinion but shes been told by many that she is. In my opinion that makes what she says rather valid. She may not always say things in a way you wish her to say it but at least she sticks up for people who arent size 0. Not many people do that.

    January 2, 2014
    • If she was overweight with the same attitude, I would do cartwheels and hold a parade in her honor. But she’s not overweight, which is exactly why she can say everything she does. And those size zero people? They’re hurt by what she’s saying when she makes comments about wanting to “look like a person.”

      January 2, 2014
  103. Matilda
    Matilda

    Honestly, what Jennifer has been saying all along is that she looks the way SHE looks, and she’s not going to let someone change that. SHE won’t diet in order to be skinny because SHE is not built like that. She’s not saying she doesn’t want to be thinner because that’s a bad thing no matter what. She’s not body shaming anyone, she’s fighting for more body types to be accepted in Hollywood. Because people look at Hollywood and think “oh, that’s what I should look like”.

    January 2, 2014
  104. Maybe instead of wasting your time writing a blog about two women you’ve never met and their weight and eating habits, you should more constructively find ways to make young women feel comfortable in their own skin no matter what size they are. Try positive reinforcement instead of bashing a woman for being thin and claiming to eat fries. You’re encouraging the problem by essentially saying she can’t like food because she’s thinner and you’re making it seem that overweight women should be sad they’re not a size 6. Worry about your own body and health and stop encouraging women to feel bad one way or the other based on the comments of 2 women you don’t know, who I’m sure go through their own body image issues and don’t need them further magnified.

    January 2, 2014
    • My bad. I thought maintaining an open dialogue (both here and on social sites) about body messages received through the media, and critically examining public perception and delivery of those messages, was constructive. Why don’t you tell me how to be more constructive, since I’m not doing anything of any value here.

      January 2, 2014
  105. okayy , so jlaw never said she hated exercise . lol . she said she’d never DIET . ” i was trying to get my body to look fit & strong ” tells people that she is against the notion of starving to be skinny . in the .gifs , there wasn’t any direct mention of mcdonald’s fries ( maybe i didn’t scrutinise them all properly ) .. she was mostly just asking / talking / making references to FOOD .

    also , the picture you featured ? she just got done with a run . so really , i don’t think this has to do with skinny vs fat or the fact that fat people , as you represented with melissa mccarthy , will practically be crucified by general public if she came out in the media saying F DIETS .

    the thing that jlaw is trying to promote is health & strength . so , yes . it might be a little biased or double-standard , but maybe that’s just how it’s always going to be . if melissa mccarthy said she eats all the time ” like a caveman ” but also loves her running time in the evenings , pretty sure people would applaud her , too .

    January 2, 2014
    • I have to disagree on the thing about Melissa McCarthy/running. I run, and if I’ve ever said anything about it, the reaction from a lot of people is either a really patronizing, “good for you, maybe you’ll lose weight!” thing that I hate, or flat out disbelief. Or, honestly, if it’s someone as famous as Melissa McCarthy, pictures of her running would end up on Perez Hilton’s site or TMZ or something so people could make fun of her.

      January 2, 2014
      • Ryan
        Ryan

        You are a biased author because you are claiming that you are overweight yourself. I think you are twisting/reading into Jennifer Lawrences’s words wayyy too much in order to get people to hate on her. I am 5’6 and 120 pounds and people tell me I am too thin all the time. I am not though. I have a normal BMI for my height, I dance, and I have a high metabolism. I am not offended by what Jennifer Lawrence said because I UNDERSTAND IT IN THE CONTEXT IT WAS SAID. She was saying that they wanted her to starve herself because the camera adds 20 pounds. She was replying to that by saying she would rather not MAKE herself look UNHEALTHY/UNNATURALLY THIN and look their standards of “chubby” on screen as long as she could look her normal, healthy, happy self in person. And so what if she says she eats fries? I agree it’s dumb for her to try and push comments like that–but you have to understand she is trying to say that you can maintain a healthy weight and still allow yourself to eat certain things—-It’s called self-control. What you put into your body reflects outside your body. People can tell how you take care of yourself/how much you care about eating well by how you look. Take a nutrition class please and stop bashing people because you are insecure and read into everything like some paranoid twat.

        January 2, 2014
        • WHEN IN THE FUCKING HELL DID I EVER INCITE PEOPLE TO HATE HER?!

          AND THEN YOU PULL “UNNATURALLY THIN” AND TELL ME TO GO TAKE A NUTRITION CLASS ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?!

          I can’t with this post anymore. 80% of you are fucking monsters.

          January 2, 2014
  106. I’ll admit right off that I didn’t read any of the previous comments, so maybe this has been addressed already, but I think she might be the transitional role into acceptance of “fat” women. I do agree with your point; she isn’t exactly a fat girl, and her words and actions are harmful to both people skinnier and larger than her. However, the standard of beauty didn’t just magically one day be about the waif-like girl figure. There was a time when big and voluptuous was considered extremely sexy, and the definition of sexy changed with the times. She may be the first step in changing the ideal back to the curvy woman.

    January 2, 2014
    • I’m really hoping that as more actresses stand up and say, “No, this is fucking ridiculous,” we’ll start to see changes, but it seems like the more they say, “I’m never going to do that,” they eventually do that.

      January 2, 2014
  107. the author doesn’t address the question: is being obese unhealthy.” https://theconversation.com/being-healthy-and-obese-is-a-myth-researchers-say-21092

    And it is. Jennifer is chubby and healthy. If a person is heathy they shouldn’t change who they are if they don’t want to. If they are unhealthy they should. That doesn’t mean they aren’t a person. But if they are unhealthy, and they care about their health, they should. Jennifer can say stuff like that about food because she’s healthy

    Not trying to be harsh, but if the author saw an bulimic puking and going around telling girls “stop puking…f*** that” she’d be outraged. So if an obese person says f** a diet that is their choice and life, but it’s not commendable.

    January 2, 2014
    • I didn’t address whether or not being obese is healthy because I wasn’t writing about the health ramifications of obesity. I was writing about internet culture and how it body shames women even when trying to empower them. It is not required to include concern troll scolding in everthing anyone writes about weight and how women are perceived based on their weight. This post was never, for one moment, about health.

      No, no one “should” change their lives. No, being thin does not earn you the right to say you like food. Being thin earns you NOTHING.

      If people were going around, bulimic or not, saying, “stop puking… f*** that,” I would be horrified. Because Bulimia is a disease, not a fancy word for “throws up after dinner.” I would be just as appalled to hear someone say, “stop puking” to a bulimic as I would to hear someone say, “Stop having cancer… f*** that.” It’s equally offensive.

      As for an obese person not being commended for saying “f*** a diet,” well… why do you and most of the commenters here feel that obese people are desperate for gold stars from nonfats? Why does there seem to be this perception that all fat people “should” (to use your word) live their lives the way nonfats want them to? At what point on the scale did I lose my right to live my life on my own terms? Was it at 180lbs? 210? 230? When I weight 280lbs. and lost 75, did I gain back some personal autonomy? Or do I have to get back down to my optimal weight as per the BMI so I have the right to live my life without a bunch of strangers on the internet assuming I’m clamoring for their approval?

      January 2, 2014
  108. emily
    emily

    The day that people realize that all women are beautiful, admirable beings, will be a good day. It’s sad that women are often not viewed in such a way, and that a woman’s beauty and value are determined by her weight (a ridiculous and discouraging notion). Both Jennifer Lawrence and Melissa McCarthy are gorgeous, funny, and talented. Body shaming (on both ends of the spectrum) is for the birds. Women should empower each other, regardless of physical appearance.

    By the way, I don’t agree or disagree with this post. I feel that all women struggle with body image, as you mentioned. I just wanted to put my thoughts on female body ideology out there. 🙂

    January 2, 2014
  109. I like Jennifer Lawrence, and I will tell you why. She may not experience being a real fat woman, as I do, but she does experience being a woman in a shameless way. The fact is, it matters not what she or anyone else looks like. We have to think about Jennifer Lawrence being fat, no matter how gorgeous she obviously is, because society tells her, just as it tells us, that the way she looks is not appropriate. Why? Because she is a woman and that makes her unacceptable. We have got to stop dividing ourselves up along these lines, people. She’s thin, she can’t understand me, whatever. She’s a woman. So am I. She is public, she says what she thinks and she isn’t sorry. I like her brazenness. I don’t feel shamed by her even though I could clean my teeth with her.

    January 2, 2014
  110. Jenn
    Jenn

    I just think you have to separate America’s feelings about MacCarthy and Lawrence. All that is our bad not hers.Lawrence’s comments have nothing to do with thinner or heavier people than her, they are about HER. When she says she’d rather look chubby on screen, she isn’t necessarily saying SHE thinks SHE looks chubby, but that people think this and tell her to lose weight, and when she says I’d rather look like a real person, she means (IMO) that if she lost the weight they might want her to, she would look unnaturally thin (you can pull the sick thin lady out for sympathy, but I am sure they would agree why would anyone CHOOSE that). She at her weight SHOULD tell people who tell her to lose weight to F- themselves, and I am sure MacCarthy would agree. Cuz it’s crazy, Bro! I love Adventure time Too! 😉

    January 2, 2014
    • Because it is THE BEST THING OF ALL TIME.

      I’m a buff baby that can dance like a man! I can shake-a my fanny, I can shake-a my can!

      January 2, 2014
  111. Ryan
    Ryan

    You are a biased author because you are claiming that you are overweight yourself. I think you are twisting/reading into Jennifer Lawrence’s words wayyy too much in order to get people to hate on her. I am 5’6 and 120 pounds and people tell me I am too thin all the time. I am not though. I have a normal BMI for my height, I dance, and I have a high metabolism. I am not offended by what Jennifer Lawrence said because I UNDERSTAND IT IN THE CONTEXT IT WAS SAID. She was saying that they wanted her to starve herself because “the camera adds 20 pounds”. She was replying to that by saying she would rather NOT MAKE herself look UNHEALTHY/UNNATURALLY THIN and instead look their standards of “chubby” on screen as long as she could look her normal, healthy, happy self in person. And so what if she says she eats fries? I agree it’s dumb for her to try and push comments like that–but you have to understand she is trying to say that you can maintain a healthy weight and still allow yourself to eat certain things—-It’s called self-control. What you put into your body reflects outside your body. People can tell how you take care of yourself/how much you care about eating well by how you look. Take a nutrition class please and stop bashing people because you are insecure and have a twisted sense of perception. I am not a Jennifer Lawrence fan either. But I hate manipulative people who just want to start drama and bash people because of their own jealousy.

    January 2, 2014
    • Irina
      Irina

      Hmm… “Ryan”, we already had to read your exceedingly clever comment before, and posting a second take will not make you right.
      Why don’t you go for a dance class or some “self-control” session?

      January 2, 2014
  112. Anyone who thinks fat people owe it to society to not be fat is too fucking dumb for words. I can’t with you people.

    Also I skipped straight to the comments to laugh at the stans. LOL stans.

    January 2, 2014
  113. Paradise
    Paradise

    This article is body shaming “girls that look like JLaw”. You’re saying that because they aren’t fat or skinny they shouldn’t try to encourage women of all sizes. Any woman of any size will be judged for eating food. What JLaw is saying is not to listen to those nasty comments, if you want those McDonalds fries then eat them. What you do to you’re body is you’re choice and no matter what you are just as beautiful as any other girl of any size. Stop being a hypocrite.

    January 2, 2014
  114. Yav
    Yav

    This article and the comments are weird to me. This girl is human, we make mistakes, things dont come out right all the time. I don’t think she intended on offending anyone. Having rabid fans, or haters dissecting her words and pouring over articles is insane. I think there are more important things to address. She is trying to be positive, sure she can’t please everyone, but tearing her down isn’t helping anyone.
    And with the other woman, have you considered that maybe she was being honest? Maybe she does try to lose weight, and doesn’t like eating unhealthily. I’m overweight and I don’t eat burgers and fries, I’m a healthy vegan!
    What good is this article? Why do you hate her fans so much? I didn’t even realize she was a big thing like this. Surely you don’t expect her to be perfect? You can see how people following her words are better off than someone promoting starvation?
    I don’t know, people are never happy, but imagine if someone examined half of the things you say in a day, so much would be taken the wrong way.
    My point is, this stuff sounds harmless. To very thin people, I know people who have illness and others who struggle to gain, and that sucks. I don’t personally know how that is, but I have seen its effect on a person. I have been both a normal weight and morbidly obese, and I never had so many comments about my weight being too high than when I was my thinnest. You can never seem to be happy in this world, write an article about how to deal with that.

    January 2, 2014
  115. Kaelie
    Kaelie

    I think from reading posts from both sides of the spectrum it is somewhat safe to say that no matter what, it is impossible to please everyone with our weight and how we talk about our weight. Jennifer is “too big” to call herself thin for some people in Hollywood but not “big enough” to call herself chubby for some people who may consider themselves bigger than her. No wonder so many girls have self image problems. How can you have a “good” or “bad” self image when you’re being bombarded from both sides with criticism for some aspects of weight and praise for other aspects? It’s all very confusing for every woman in society. There are certainly healthy body weights but it varies from woman to woman, and yes sometimes genetics or other health complications get in the way. I think Jennifer’s comments are her taking a stand against one of those sides that she has felt bombarded by the most (Hollywood and the detrimental impact it has on all women, no matter the shape or size), in hopes of positively impacting girls who feel that same kind of pressure.

    January 3, 2014
  116. […] JLaw, goes around calling herself fat.  Sweetheart, GET A MIRROR.  Another blogger was better at articulating this and other […]

    January 3, 2014
  117. […] reads: The Important Thing About Yelling Via Huff Post Jennifer Lawrence Body Shames More Than You Realize via Sweaters For Days Love Is…Holy Shit I Have Cancer via Huff […]

    January 6, 2014
  118. […] like omg guys she definitely only eats fries made out of cucumber can you not seeee this. This article, which made it onto Huff Post, spoke for a lot of people. I don’t agree with all it says, but […]

    January 6, 2014
  119. […] from maybe Jennifer Lawrence (who, according to this opinion, may be inadvertently “body-shaming” through her unapologetic attitude regarding food, […]

    January 7, 2014
  120. […] The problem we face in pointing the next step towards the right direction is in real-izing what we’re really saying, semiotically. Take one of the newest addition to the fashion trend as a prime example: American Eagle’s new #aerieREAL. The hashtag exploits the idea of ‘real,’ expressing at least that the girls in their photos have not been retouched. But the self-posted pictures of their fans show a wide range of what constitutes the real, and not all of them have the same standards. Meanwhile, they’re still encouraging suspended disbelief with camera angles, make-up, and false labels that claim things are more real with #NoFilter–nevermind that every perspective is a filter, the standards of public appeal still exist, and even our best models are brushing off some rawness. […]

    January 23, 2014

Comments are closed, but trackbacks and pingbacks are open.