In our review of the literature on women and weight bias (Fikkan and Rothblum 2011), we attempted to cull findings from multiple disciplines that demonstrate the impact (social, educational, and financial) of the stigma of women’s weight. We undertook this for two purposes: the first was to address a gap in the weight bias literature, which tends to make only a side note mention that fat women suffer worse penalties than do fat men; the second, to raise the point that feminist scholars, though highly attuned to pressures on women to be thin, have spent less time discussing the disparate impact for women of being fat, despite the mounting evidence of how much weight bias impacts women. We offered some of our own thoughts on the persisting neglect of this topic among feminist writers, despite previous calls to action (Rothblum 1992, 1994). Given the dearth of attention to what has become one of the most frequent types of discrimination against women (Puhl et al. 2008), we asked: “is fat a feminist issue?” We were delighted with the response from the commentators and the thoughtful exploration they devoted to our question and to this issue within feminist scholarship. Here, we briefly summarize some of the main themes identified by these writers, offer our own thoughts on these themes and repeat their call to action for further study of this important area of women’s lives.
Sex Roles – Springer Journals
Published: Feb 14, 2012
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