David Thompson


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November 08, 2010



As ever, life imitates art:


'Fat Studies'? Shouldn't that be Angry Studies for Overweight Lefties?


“Shouldn’t that be Angry Studies for Overweight Lefties?”

Well… It’s fairly obvious from the outline that Fat Studies is largely conceived as a nest for political activism and psychological self-indulgence. Note the emphasis on “weight-safe environments,” “bias,” “oppression” and cultivated victimhood. The template and dynamic have been lifted wholesale from earlier grievance groups. Hence the inordinate fretting about the “prejudice” of having “tiny wooden desks” in the classroom. It pretty much sets the tone.

I suspect such “studies” will appeal to people who, for instance, see the video below and immediately construe it as “fat bashing,” completely missing – and inverting - the actual sentiment of the film.



Let me just point out that Fat Studies might be the first collegiate Grievance Studies department which will ultimately skew conservative -- look at how the Obamas are doing their best to stigmatize obesity.

Karen M

"From the activist's perspective, thinner students might be the ideal targets of a Fat Studies course, because they're both the victims and the perpetrators of weight stigma."

Victims AND perpetrators. It's like lefty catnip.


“Victims AND perpetrators. It’s like lefty catnip.”

Quite. Though I couldn’t help but smile at the mention of Fat Studies advocate Professor Linda Bacon.

Durham University recently dipped its toe in Fat Studies, including a seminar titled “Abject Embodiment: Uneven Targets of Fat Discrimination,” supposedly questioning “the political, social, cultural and economic structures within which dominant approaches to fatness are embedded.” Inevitably, there was plenty of pompous pseudo-scholarship – “Socio-spatial inequalities and emotional landscapes of body size” – and several invited “activists” (or “rad fatties”) who “initiated dialogue,” “combined the personal, political and academic” and rattled on about race, class and gender, as they do.


Those with the stomach for it, as it were, can listen for themselves:


Karen M

"Fat Studies advocate Professor Linda Bacon."



"I tried to join a fat activist group, and I was rejected because I was not of size,"

Not of size. I'm supposed to take these people seriously, right?

carbon based lifeform

"Johnson, who teaches a course on weight and society..."

I'm holding out for a course on big feet and society. Really Big Feet Studies, that's where the oppression is.


Can't wait for the higher education bubble to burst and take this crap with it.


Of course, there's the question of whether it's better to be obese, or to be fit and trim during the coming Econapolypse:


Ted S., Catskills, NY

I think the people who get discriminated against and don't have a Studies group for them are bald people. We need more Bald Studies departments.


But in all fairness if you were starting a course on fat studies you have to do something more than just say to the class, "hi, tubbies" and "OMG how many calories is that cake?"

You have to branch out into all sorts of "ishoos" and explore all avenues or it just becomes just weight-watchers writ larger. Given that the left has the widest avenues (though often the narrowest minds to travel them) you are inevitably going to come up with innovative methods of being a victim. And hey, being a victim means you always care about yourself before any one else.



“And hey, being a victim means you always care about yourself before anyone else.”

Pretentious victimhood makes possible all manner of indulgence. Yale’s Office of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Resources – for instance – has cultivated a truly prodigious sense of victimhood and entitlement – one utterly divorced from the real world and apparently insatiable in its demands. As Heather Mac Donald points out in the piece below, what you end up with is “a co-dependent relationship between self-engrossed students and adults whose careers consist of catering to that self-involvement.”



Might I suggest a new rights group. One that promotes the least of all organisms: The Society for the Promotion of Equal Representation of Microbes, or S.P.E.R.M. God knows, there's probably one out there somewhere.

Rich Rostrom

Am I the only one who glanced at this URL, and thought the subdirectory name was "falstaff"?


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