Fat Lives: A Feminist Psychological Exploration

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Routledge, Oct 26, 2012 - Medical - 166 pages
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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.

  

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Contents

a mantra of body weight health and lifestyle setting the scene for fat lives
1
1 Putting the fat body in context
10
2 Exploring fat lives
27
always visible but rarely seen
44
4 I just wear clothes to keep me warm
57
5 Health wellbeing and the responsible fat woman
74
6 Gendering fat
94
the experience of being fat
120
Appendix 1 Theory in the exploration of fat lives
132
Appendix 2 Transcription conventions
143
Notes
144
References
145
Index
162
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

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.

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