Ever caught somebody - or yourself - checking out the content of a 'fat' person's supermarket trolley? Ever wondered what lies behind this behaviour, or what it might be like to be at the receiving end of this judging gaze?
Within the context of the current 'obesity debate', this book investigates the embodied experience of 'being large' from a critical psychological perspective. Using poststructuralist and feminist theories, the author explores the discourses available to and used by self-designated 'fat' individuals, as well as the societal power relationships that are produced by these.
Using the issues of body size and 'fat' as an illustration, the book describes the benefits of exploring psychological and social matters from a poststructuralist perspective, and the dangers inherent in taking reductionist approaches to public health and other social issues. As such, this book should be of particular interest to anyone working within the disciplines of psychology, sociology, and health studies, as well as those involved in the study of health, gender issues and appearance.
About the Author
Irmgard Tischner is Senior Lecturer in Social Psychology at the University of Worcester and associate member of the Centre for Appearance Research at the University of the West of England, Bristol. Her research focuses on poststructuralist, feminist and critical psychological approaches to the study of embodiment and subjectivity, particularly in relation to (gendered) discourses of body size, health and physical activity in contemporary western societies.
Table of Contents
A mantra of body weight, health and lifestyle– setting the scene for fat lives. 1. Putting the Fat Body in Context. 2. How can we explore fat lives? 3. Women’s in/visible ‘large bodies’- always visible but rarely seen. 4. "I just wear clothes to keep me warm". 5. Health, well-being and the responsible fat woman. 6. Gendering Fat. Conclusions: The Experience of Being Fat