"Feel in your body": Fat Activist Affects in Blogs

Kaisu Hynnä, Katariina Kyrölä

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
11 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This article interrogates how body positive and fat activist blogs offer alternative ways of feeling one’s body, using the Finnish More to Love (MTL, 2009–2013) and its successor PlusMimmi (PM, 2013–) and the American Queer Fat Femme Guide to Life (QFF, 2008–) as its examples. We investigate how these blogs, despite their differences, invite their publics not only to feel positive about their own and others’ norm-exceeding bodies, but to feel in their bodies. While previous studies have criticized body positive discourses for employing a simplistic language of choice and relying on heteronormative logics of feminine attractiveness, they have not paid specific attention to how exactly body positive media attract and engage people affectively. In this article, MTL, PM, and QFF’s strategies of inviting their followers to feel in their bodies are analyzed in the context of three key themes: exercise, fashion, and sex. We argue that when explored through the framework of affect, fat activist blogs do not present body positivity simply as a matter of choice but offer a space to feel through the affective contradictions of inhabiting a fat feminine body in a sizeist society. At their best, body positive blogs open up spaces of comfort which can be radical for bodies accustomed to discomfort.

Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Pages (from-to)
JournalSocial Media and Society
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Social media
  • Blogs
  • body size
  • affect theory
  • Feminist Theory

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