Putting Body Politics Back Into Body Positivity

Let's Put Body Politics Back Into The Body Positive Movement Because Harmful-Isms Cause Fatphobia

Fatphobia is racist, sexist, and ableist — and it's something that we must eradicate.

238
views

When we talk about body positivity, we sometimes tend to think of a few things: parts of our bodies we feel confident about — which are usually small or toned — as well as appreciating what our body can do. We may tend to think of small, white, young, conventionally attractive women. We may tend to think of these images because this is what we're fed, whether that be in movies or on Instagram.

But body positivity is and always has been inherently body politics. It's intersectional feminism. It's including marginalized identities, fat people, conventionally unattractive people, men, people who are gender non-binary and more.

Body positivity and body politics also center around how we address our body. It can be found in fashion, in enjoyable workouts, in hiking trips, in singing, and in late-night ice cream runs. It's our self-talk and how safe we do or do not feel and how what we look like impacts our everyday lives and interactions with others of different identities. It's far from always looking safe and happy.

The fear of fatphobia and the tendency to leave it out of the body positive world is ableist. It's why doctors misdiagnose fat people all of the time, worsening their real medical issue. It ignores the fact that diabetes can be caused by genetics, poverty, and violence and that high blood pressure can come from the anxiety of fatphobia surrounding your body, not your body itself. It discriminates against people who aren't able-bodied.

Fatphobia is also sexist. It says that a person's worth — and especially that of a girl or woman — is found in her body — or more accurately, a lack of it. It's opening a woman's body up to scrutiny as property that can be owned and controlled. It decides what a woman "can" and "should" wear and how much weight she needs to lose and what she can eat without judgment. It discriminates against and limits women.

Fatphobia is also racist. With black women, being fat is correlated with the Enlightenment era belief that fatness was evidence of savagery and racial inferiority. Black women are not included in the idea of what body positivity looks like. Actress Rebel Wilson didn't see previous black actresses as being the real first plus-size women in romantic comedies because "blackness" is inaccurately and unfortunately equated with largeness and fear.

Fatphobia is an understandable feeling in today's diet culture-filled society, but it's something we must eradicate. We have to keep in mind what fatphobia really comes down to — all of the -isms — and use that to fight back, especially as it never leads to anything positive and can even lead to life-threatening eating disorders.

Popular Right Now

6 Popular Songs That Are Disrespectful to Women

Misogyny is everywhere
38419
views

The disrespect of women in music is something that needs to be stopped. The more the media portrays women in a negative light, or in a way that encourages stereotypes and gender roles, the more people will continue to disrespect women without consequence.

Music plays a huge role in so many peoples' lives, so if they hear their favorite artist bashing women, they will feel that it's okay as well. Here are just a few popular songs that either disrespect, objectify, or sexualize women; but there are thousands upon thousands more.

1. Maroon 5 "Animals"

First of all: the music video. For the people that have not seen it, Adam Levine (lead singer) is shown essentially stalking and "preying on" a random girl he sees while working at a meat shop. Yes, I know Adam is extremely attractive. But this video is so aggressive and disturbing it almost seems to be encouraging the sexual harassment of women, and believe it or not, the lyrics are just as bad.

Baby I'm preying on you tonight
Hunt you down, eat you alive
Just like animals, animals, like animals

So...women are animals that are meant to be hunted down and conquered? Do I have that right? I certainly hope not, because that would be telling men it's okay to treat women like a challenge, and we are so much more than just another "meal."

2. Pitbull "Timber"

This song is super catchy, and it's also really fun to dance to. But if you take a closer look, you can easily see the sexist quality of this song.

I have 'em like Miley Cyrus, clothes off
Twerking in their bras and thongs, timber
Face down, booty up, timber
That's the way we like to-What?-timber
I'm slicker than an oil spill
She say she won't, but I bet she will, timber

No, Pitbull, I'm pretty sure if she says she won't, then she won't. It is never okay to take a "no" as a challenge. If a girl says no to your advances, let it go. She is not yours for the taking, and you are definitely not entitled to have her "face down, booty up."

3. Robin Thicke "Blurred Lines"

This song is so thoroughly sexist that it was hard for me to even pick a sample lyric that stood out the most, but out of all of these objectifying lyrics I managed to find one that especially disgusted me.
So I'm just watching and waitin'
For you to salute the true big pimpin'
Not many women can refuse this pimpin'
I'm a nice guy but don't get confused, this pimpin'

Nice guy? Where? I'm failing to see it here. I'm sure plenty of women are able to refuse whoever they want, whenever they want, for whatever reason they want...and no one has the right to be angry with them. It is the woman's choice to turn someone down, regardless of how "pimpin'" they claim to be.

4. Nick Jonas "Jealous"

At first, this song seems kind of nice. Yeah, it's sweet when a guy gets protective of a girl, but possessiveness is a completely different story. No man has a right to any woman, or her actions.

I mean no disrespect
It's my right to be hellish
I still get jealous

No. It's not your right to be hellish. If your girl wants to be friends with someone, it is okay. You do not have a claim on her, and you don't get to control who she talks to.

5. The All American Rejects "Dirty Little Secret"



I'll keep you my dirty little secret
Don't tell anyone or you'll be just another regret
My dirty little secret
Who has to know

...Does anything really have to be said about this song?

6. Jason Derulo "Talk Dirty"

I'm not going to lie, I definitely jam to this song once in a while, but it's really negative to the female image. No one can deny that.
Been around the world don't speak their language
But your booty don't need explainin'
All I really need to understand is
When you talk dirty to me

"Don't understand what a girl is saying? It's okay because it doesn't matter anyway, as long as you can get into her pants you're good to go." That's pretty much what I get from this song.

There are good songs, too.

Alongside these few misogynistic songs, there are songs that show respect for women and give them empowerment. Some popular ones are Meghan Trainor's "No," and Shawn Mendes' "Treat You Better."

My suggestion? Focus more on these positive songs than the negative, even though you may want to jam to them sometimes.

Cover Image Credit: Unknown

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

My Body Is Mine And I Will Do What I Want With It

Nobody is entitled to tell me what I can and cannot have on or do with my body.

2328
views

Today, I went and got my second tattoo and my boyfriend of over a year and a half went with me to hold my hand the entire time. I could not thank him enough for being there with me.

To some people, it may not seem like a big deal but this time almost two years ago, I was with a boy who would not allow me to get anything tattooed on my body.

"Allow me."

He told me whenever I talked about getting tattoos how ugly he thought they were and how he didn't want me to ruin my body because he thought I was beautiful and sexy the way I was.

Today, sitting in the tattoo shop with my boyfriend encouraging me throughout the process because he knows how long I've wanted this tattoo, I realized what it's like to have someone who truly supports me through anything by my side. Not someone who only loves me for how I am now, but how I will continue to be in the future.

Thinking back on the whole thing now, it's crazy how much I let people dictate what I did or didn't do. I didn't cut my hair short, I didn't get any piercings, I didn't dye my hair, all because the person who was supposed to support me decided he only loved me for what I had to offer.

To everybody who thinks they're entitled to tell me what I can and can't do to myself, fuck off.

This is my body, nobody else's.

I don't belong to anybody, I don't owe anybody anything.

To tell me what to do is an insecure boy's way of trying to hold some sort of power over me. I don't have to do anything I don't want to and, as the sole owner of my body and mind, I don't care if you don't like something about me. I don't do anything to please anybody else but me. Just because I am with somebody does not mean that a person holds any power over me whatsoever. A relationship is about supporting each other and helping each other flourish into the best version of ourselves.

Tampering someone's growth, telling them that who they want to be is ugly because of what they chose to do with their own damn body is not a relationship. That is toxicity in one of its purest forms. I know a few couples who are like that and it saddens me to know that either of the people within the relationship is refusing to be who they want to be because of their partner. A relationship is about support.

To the boy who made me feel insecure and controlled me in every way he possibly could, I hope you never find another relationship until you can grow up. You manipulated me and controlled me and the way you treated me I still cannot get out of my head. But today I was able to break free of the binds you put on me and modify my body in a way you said would make me ugly. I have never felt more beautiful. To the man who stands beside me and supports me in every decision, I make for myself, thank you for being the rock that helps keep me stable and the extra push I need when I'm scared.

Getting this tattoo was a lot harder than my first because I was scared to be ugly. You helped me realize what a real relationship is and I've never been more grateful for another human. And to all of the girls and guys out there who are denying yourself anything because of what other people say, whether it be clothes or shoes or tattoos or piercings or plastic surgery, anything that you want to do.

Nobody is entitled to your body.

Nobody else lives in your body.

This life is all about making yourself happy.

Related Content

Facebook Comments