O Ler a Diferença é um desafio que funciona como um clube do livro aberto em que qualquer pessoa pode participar e que todos os meses se dedicará a leituras dentro de um tema específico. O mês de julho será sobre Positividade Corporal e, como é costume, compilei uma lista com várias sugestões de livros dentro do tema. Por positividade corporal entende-se a relação saudável com o corpo humano em todas as suas formas, cores e feitios. É um tema que abre a porta a várias discussões, como a ditadura dos padrões de beleza, racismo, gordofobia, sexualidade, hiperssexualização da mulher e do seu corpo e muitas outras problemáticas que tentei contemplar com estas sugestões.
Para mais informações sobre o desafio basta clicar aqui. Haverá uma sessão Zoom para falar sobre as leituras do mês e aprofundar mais alguns destes temas, marcada para sábado, dia 6 de agosto, às 21h. Se quiseres participar, poderás inscrever-te através deste formulário. Para facilitar o acesso à informação, reuni todos os links úteis do desafio nesta página, que será atualizada mensalmente e que poderás consultar sempre que quiseres!
1. “Esse Cabelo” de Djamilia Pereira de Almeida
«O que se passa por dentro das cabeças é mais importante do que o que se passa por fora? Falar de cabelos é sempre uma futilidade? Não necessariamente, até porque, segundo a narradora deste texto belo e contundente, «escrever parece-se com pentear uma cabeleira em descanso num busto de esferovite» e visitar salões é uma boa forma de conhecer países, de aprender a distinguir modos e feições e até de detectar preconceitos.
Esta é a história de uma menina que aterrou despenteada aos três anos em Lisboa, vinda de Luanda, e das suas memórias privadas ao longo do tempo, porque não somos sempre iguais aos nossos retratos de infância; mas é também a história das origens do seu cabelo crespo, cruzamento das vidas de um comerciante português no Congo, de um pescador albino de M’banza Kongo, de católicas anciãs de Seia, de cristãos-novos maçons de Castelo Branco – uma família que descreveu o caminho entre Portugal e Angola ao longo de quatro gerações com um à-vontade de passageiro frequente. E, assim, ao acompanharmos as aventuras deste cabelo crespo – curto, comprido, amado, odiado, tantas vezes esquecido ou confundido com o abismo mental -, é também à história indirecta da relação entre vários continentes – a uma geopolítica – que inequivocamente assistimos.»
2. “Frankenstein” de Mary Shelley
«Mary Shelley começou a escrever Frankenstein quando tinha apenas dezoito anos. Simultaneamente um thriller gótico, um romance apaixonado e um conto de advertência sobre os perigos da ciência, Frankenstein conta a história do estudante de ciências Victor Frankenstein. Obcecado em descobrir a origem da vida e conseguindo animar matéria inerte, Frankenstein monta um ser humano a partir de partes do corpo roubadas; porém, ao trazê-lo à vida, recua horrorizado ante a fealdade da criatura. Atormentada pelo isolamento e pela solidão, a criatura outrora inocente vira-se para o mal e desencadeia uma campanha de vingança assassina contra o seu criador, Frankenstein.
Frankenstein, um best-seller instantâneo e um antepassado importante do terror e da ficção científica, não só conta uma história aterrorizante, como também suscita perguntas profundas e perturbadoras sobre a própria natureza da vida e o lugar da humanidade no cosmos: o que significa ser humano? Quais são as responsabilidades que temos uns com os outros? Até onde podemos ir na manipulação da Natureza? Na nossa época, cheia de notícias sobre a engenharia genética, doação de órgãos e bioterrorismo, estas questões são mais relevantes do que nunca.»
(lê a minha opinião sobre este livro aqui)
3. “Wonder” de R. J. Palacio
«August nasceu com uma deficiência genética que faz com que o seu rosto seja completamente deformado. Quando nasceu os médicos não tinham esperança de que sobrevivesse, mas sobreviveu. Vários anos e muitas cirurgias depois, August vai, aos 10 anos, enfrentar o maior desfio da sua vida. A escola.
Contado a várias vozes, é uma história emotiva das dificuldades que tem de superar uma criança com uma terrível deformação e um relato do milagre que é a vida.»
4. “Americanah” de Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
«Ainda adolescentes, Ifemelu e Obinze apaixonam-se. A Nigéria vive dias sombrios sob o jugo de uma ditadura militar e quem pode abandonar o país fá-lo rapidamente.
Ifemelu, bela e ousada, vai estudar para os Estados Unidos. Para trás, deixa o país, a família e Obinze, a quem chama Teto, um nome que testemunha uma intimidade absoluta e irrepetível.
Obinze, introvertido e meigo, planeava juntar-se-lhe, mas a América do pós-11 de setembro fecha-lhe as portas. Sem nada a perder, ele arrisca uma vida como imigrante ilegal em Londres.
Anos mais tarde, na recém-formada democracia nigeriana, Obinze é um homem rico e poderoso. Nos Estados Unidos, Ifemelu também vingou: é autora de um blogue de culto. Mas há algo que nem a América nem o tempo conseguem apagar. E quando decide regressar à Nigéria, Ifemelu terá de reinventar uma linguagem comum com Obinze e encontrar o seu lugar num país muito diferente do que guardou na memória.»
5. “A Gorda” de Isabela Figueiredo
«Maria Luísa, a heroína deste romance, é uma bela rapariga, inteligente, boa aluna, voluntariosa e com uma forte personalidade. Mas é gorda. E isto, esta característica física, incomoda-a de tal modo que coloca tudo o resto em causa. Na adolescência sofre, e aguenta em silêncio, as piadas e os insultos dos colegas, fica esquecida, ao lado da mais feia das suas colegas, no baile dos finalistas do colégio. Mas não desiste, não se verga, e vai em frente, gorda, à procura de uma vida que valha a pena viver.
Este é um dos melhores livros que se escreveu em Portugal nos últimos anos.»
6. “Dumplin’” de Julie Murphy
«Self-proclaimed fat girl Willowdean Dickson (dubbed “Dumplin’” by her former beauty queen mom) has always been at home in her own skin. Her thoughts on having the ultimate bikini body? Put a bikini on your body. With her all-American beauty best friend, Ellen, by her side, things have always worked…until Will takes a job at Harpy’s, the local fast-food joint. There she meets Private School Bo, a hot former jock. Will isn’t surprised to find herself attracted to Bo. But she is surprised when he seems to like her back.
Instead of finding new heights of self-assurance in her relationship with Bo, Will starts to doubt herself. So she sets out to take back her confidence by doing the most horrifying thing she can imagine: entering the Miss Clover City beauty pageant—along with several other unlikely candidates—to show the world that she deserves to be up there as much as any twiggy girl does. Along the way, she’ll shock the hell out of Clover City—and maybe herself most of all.
With starry Texas nights, red candy suckers, Dolly Parton songs, and a wildly unforgettable heroine—Dumplin’ is guaranteed to steal your heart.»
7. “I’ll Be the One” de Lyla Lee
«Skye Shin has heard it all. Fat girls shouldn’t dance. Wear bright colors. Shouldn’t call attention to themselves. But Skye dreams of joining the glittering world of K-Pop, and to do that, she’s about to break all the rules that society, the media, and even her own mother, have set for girls like her.
She’ll challenge thousands of other performers in an internationally televised competition looking for the next K-pop star, and she’ll do it better than anyone else.
When Skye nails her audition, she’s immediately swept into a whirlwind of countless practices, shocking performances, and the drama that comes with reality TV. What she doesn’t count on are the highly fat-phobic beauty standards of the Korean pop entertainment industry, her sudden media fame and scrutiny, or the sparks that soon fly with her fellow competitor, Henry Cho. But Skye has her sights on becoming the world’s first plus-sized K-pop star, and that means winning the competition—without losing herself.»
8. “The Bluest Eye” de Toni Morrison
«The Bluest Eye is Toni Morrison’s first novel, a book heralded for its richness of language and boldness of vision. Set in the author’s girlhood hometown of Lorain, Ohio, it tells the story of black, eleven-year-old Pecola Breedlove. Pecola prays for her eyes to turn blue so that she will be as beautiful and beloved as all the blond, blue-eyed children in America. In the autumn of 1941, the year the marigolds in the Breedloves’ garden do not bloom. Pecola’s life does change- in painful, devastating ways.
What its vivid evocation of the fear and loneliness at the heart of a child’s yearning, and the tragedy of its fulfillment. The Bluest Eye remains one of Toni Morrisons’s most powerful, unforgettable novels- and a significant work of American fiction.»
9. “Jemima Small versus The Universe” de Tamsin Winter
«Jemima Small just wants to be like other girls. She hates being called “Jemima Big”, being forced to join the school health group – aka Fat Club – and that she can’t apply for her favourite TV show without worrying everyone will laugh. But she also knows that the biggest stars in the universe are the brightest. So maybe it’s her time to shine.
A brilliantly funny and touching new novel exploring big issues of bullying, body confidence and, most importantly, learning how to be happy with who you are.»
(lê a minha opinião sobre este livro aqui)
10. “Sulwe” de Lupita Nyong’o
«Sulwe has skin the color of midnight. She is darker than everyone in her family. She is darker than anyone in her school. Sulwe just wants to be beautiful and bright, like her mother and sister. Then a magical journey in the night sky opens her eyes and changes everything.
In this stunning debut picture book, actress Lupita Nyong’o creates a whimsical and heartwarming story to inspire children to see their own unique beauty.»
11. “Every Body Shines: Sixteen Stories About Living Fabulously Fat” de Cassandra Newbould
«An intersectional, feminist YA anthology from some of today’s most exciting voices across a span of genres, all celebrating body diversity and fat acceptance through short stories.
Fat girls and boys and nonbinary teens are: friends who lift each other up, heroes who rescue themselves, big bodies in space, intellects taking up space, and bodies looking and feeling beautiful. They express themselves through fashion, sports and other physical pursuits, through food, and music, and art. They are flirting and falling in love. They are loving to themselves and one another. With stories that feature fat main characters starring in a multitude of stories and genres, and written by authors who live these lives too, this is truly a unique collection that shows fat young people the representation they deserve.
With a foreword by Aubry Gordon, creator of Your Fat Friend, and with stories by:
Nafiza Azad, Chris Baron, Sheena Boekweg, Linda Camacho, Kelly deVos, Alex Gino, Claire Kann, amanda lovelace, Hillary Monahan, Cassandra Newbould, Francina Simone, Rebecca Sky, Monique Gray Smith, Renée Watson, Catherine Adel West, Jennifer Yen»
12. “The Nowhere Girls” de Amy Reed
«Three misfits come together to avenge the rape of a fellow classmate and in the process trigger a change in the misogynist culture at their high school transforming the lives of everyone around them in this searing and timely story.
Who are the Nowhere Girls?
They’re everygirl. But they start with just three:
Grace Salter is the new girl in town, whose family was run out of their former community after her southern Baptist preacher mom turned into a radical liberal after falling off a horse and bumping her head.
Rosina Suarez is the queer punk girl in a conservative Mexican immigrant family, who dreams of a life playing music instead of babysitting her gaggle of cousins and waitressing at her uncle’s restaurant.
Erin Delillo is obsessed with two things: marine biology and Star Trek: The Next Generation, but they aren’t enough to distract her from her suspicion that she may in fact be an android.
When Grace learns that Lucy Moynihan, the former occupant of her new home, was run out of town for having accused the popular guys at school of gang rape, she’s incensed that Lucy never had justice. For their own personal reasons, Rosina and Erin feel equally deeply about Lucy’s tragedy, so they form an anonymous group of girls at Prescott High to resist the sexist culture at their school, which includes boycotting sex of any kind with the male students.
Told in alternating perspectives, this groundbreaking novel is an indictment of rape culture and explores with bold honesty the deepest questions about teen girls and sexuality.»
13. “What I Like About Me” de Jenna Guillaume
«You know all those movies where teenagers have, like, THE SUMMER OF THEIR LIVES?
This summer is probably not going to be that.
Source: Everything that’s happened since yesterday …
The last thing sixteen-year-old Maisie Martin thought she’d be doing this summer is entering a beauty pageant.
Not when she’s spent most of her life hiding her body from everyone.
Not when her Dad is AWOL for Christmas and her gorgeous older sister has returned to rock Maisie’s shaky confidence. And her best friend starts going out with the boy she’s always loved.
But Maisie’s got something to prove.
As she writes down all the ways this summer is going from bad to worse in her school-assignment journal, what starts as a homework torture-device might just end up being an account of how Maisie didn’t let anything, or anyone, hold her back…»
14. “Watch Us Rise” de Renée Watson e Ellen Hagan
«Jasmine and Chelsea are sick of the way women are treated even at their progressive NYC high school, so they decide to start a Women’s Rights Club. They post everything online—poems, essays, videos of Chelsea performing her poetry, and Jasmine’s response to the racial macroaggressions she experiences—and soon they go viral. But with such positive support, the club is also targeted by online trolls. When things escalate, the principal shuts the club down. Jasmine and Chelsea will risk everything for their voices—and those of other young women—to be heard.»
15. “Fitness Junkie” de Lucy Sykes e Jo Piazza
«When Janey Sweet, CEO of a couture wedding dress company, is photographed in the front row of a fashion show eating a bruffin–the delicious lovechild of a brioche and a muffin–her best friend and business partner, Beau, gives her an ultimatum: Lose thirty pounds or lose your job. Sure, Janey has gained some weight since her divorce, and no, her beautifully cut trousers don’t fit like they used to, so Janey throws herself headlong into the world of the fitness revolution, signing up for a shockingly expensive workout pass, baring it all for Free the Nipple yoga, sweating through boot camp classes run by Sri Lankan militants and spinning to the screams of a Lycra-clad instructor with rage issues. At a juice shop she meets Jacob, a cute young guy who takes her dumpster-diving outside Whole Foods on their first date. At a shaman’s tea ceremony she meets Hugh, a silver fox who holds her hand through an ayahuasca hallucination And at a secret exercise studio Janey meets Sara Strong, the wildly popular workout guru whose special dance routine has starlets and wealthy women flocking to her for results that seem too good to be true. As Janey eschews delicious carbs, pays thousands of dollars to charlatans, and is harassed by her very own fitness bracelet, she can’t help but wonder: Did she really need to lose weight in the first place?
A hilarious send-up of the health and wellness industry, Fitness Junkie is a glorious romp through the absurd landscape of our weight-obsessed culture.»
16. “The Belles” de Dhonielle Clayton
«Camellia Beauregard is a Belle. In the opulent world of Orléans, Belles are revered, for they control Beauty, and Beauty is a commodity coveted above all else. In Orléans, the people are born gray, they are born damned, and only with the help of a Belle and her talents can they transform and be made beautiful.
But it’s not enough for Camellia to be just a Belle. She wants to be the favorite—the Belle chosen by the Queen of Orléans to live in the royal palace, to tend to the royal family and their court, to be recognized as the most talented Belle in the land. But once Camellia and her Belle sisters arrive at court, it becomes clear that being the favorite is not everything she always dreamed it would be. Behind the gilded palace walls live dark secrets, and Camellia soon learns that the very essence of her existence is a lie—that her powers are far greater, and could be more dangerous, than she ever imagined. And when the queen asks Camellia to risk her own life and help the ailing princess by using Belle powers in unintended ways, Camellia now faces an impossible decision.
With the future of Orléans and its people at stake, Camellia must decide—save herself and her sisters and the way of the Belles—or resuscitate the princess, risk her own life, and change the ways of her world forever.»
1. “O Universo nos Teus Olhos” de Jennifer Niven
«Libby, outrora a rapariga mais gorda da América, conseguiu finalmente ultrapassar o desgosto causado pela morte da mãe e está pronta para voltar a viver.
Jack é o típico rapaz popular do liceu, no entanto tem prosopagnosia e não consegue reconhecer caras.
Quando o destino os une a solidão que cada um sente dá lugar a sentimentos muito diferentes… Uma história de superação e de um amor verdadeiro e invulgar que nos devolve a esperança no mundo, em nós e no outro.»
2. “De Olho Nela” de Kate Stayman-London
«Bea Schumacher é uma blogueira de moda plus size que tem amigos maravilhosos, uma família dedicada, uma legião de seguidores… e um coração partido. Para se distrair, toda semana ela acompanha o viciante reality show É Pra Casar, em que uma pessoa busca o amor verdadeiro entre vinte belos pretendentes.
Justo quando Bea desiste de vez de procurar pelo amor, ela recebe uma proposta intrigante: É Pra Casar quer que ela seja a próxima estrela do programa. Bea concorda, mas com uma condição: ela não vai se apaixonar de jeito nenhum. O que ela quer é dar mais visibilidade para sua carreira e para outras mulheres plus size, inspirando pessoas no país inteiro a se aceitarem.
Mas, quando as câmeras começam a rodar, ela percebe que as coisas serão mais complicadas do que ela esperava… Em uma narrativa montada a partir de tweets, roteiros e blogs de fofocas, Kate Stayman-London nos convida a mergulhar no mundo incrivelmente real de Bea.»
3. “Eleanor & Park” de Rainbow Rowell
« Dois inadaptados. Um amor extraordinário.
Eleanor… é uma miúda nova na escola, vinda de outra cidade. A sua vida familiar é um caos; sendo roliça e ruiva, e com a sua forma estranha de vestir, atrai a atenção de todos em seu redor, nem sempre pelos melhores motivos.
Park… é um rapaz meio coreano. Não é propriamente popular, mas vestido de negro e sempre isolado nos seus fones e livros, conseguiu tornar-se invisível. Tudo começa a mudar quando Park aceita que Eleanor se sente ao seu lado no autocarro da escola.
A princípio nem sequer se falam, mas pouco a pouco nasce uma genuína relação de amizade e cumplicidade que mudará as suas vidas. E contra o mundo, o amor aparece. Porque o amor é um superpoder.»
4. “A Cor Púrpura” de Alice Walker
«Vencedor do prémio Pulitzer e o National Book Award, A Cor Púrpura foi adaptado ao cinema em 1985 por Steven Spielberg e nomeado para 11 óscares.
A Cor Púrpura aborda temas como a violência doméstica a que estavam sujeitas as mulheres negras no início do século XX, a relação dos negros com o seu passado de escravatura, e a busca do espiritual num mundo cruel e sem sentido.
Um livro extremamente atual e que nos faz refletir sobre as relações de amor, ódio e poder, em uma sociedade ainda marcada pelas desigualdades de gêneros, etnias e classes sociais.»
5. “Spoiler Alert” de Olivia Dade
«Marcus Caster-Rupp has a secret. While the world knows him as Aeneas, the star of the biggest show on TV, Gods of the Gates, he’s known to fanfiction readers as Book!AeneasWouldNever, an anonymous and popular poster. Marcus is able to get out his own frustrations with his character through his stories, especially the ones that feature the internet’s favorite couple to ship, Aeneas and Lavinia. But if anyone ever found out about his online persona, he’d be fired. Immediately.
April Whittier has secrets of her own. A hardcore Lavinia fan, she’s hidden her fanfiction and cosplay hobby from her “real life” for years—but not anymore. When she decides to post her latest Lavinia creation on Twitter, her photo goes viral. Trolls and supporters alike are commenting on her plus-size take, but when Marcus, one half of her OTP, sees her pic and asks her out on a date to spite her critics, she realizes life is really stranger than fanfiction.
Even though their first date is a disaster, Marcus quickly realizes that he wants much more from April than a one-time publicity stunt. And when he discovers she’s actually Unapologetic Lavinia Stan, his closest fandom friend, he has one more huge secret to hide from her.
With love and Marcus’s career on the line, can the two of them stop hiding once and for all, or will a match made in fandom end up prematurely cancelled?»
6. “Fat Chance, Charlie Vega” de Crystal Maldonado
«Charlie Vega is a lot of things. Smart. Funny. Artistic. Ambitious. Fat.
People sometimes have a problem with that last one. Especially her mom. Charlie wants a good relationship with her body, but it’s hard, and her mom leaving a billion weight loss shakes on her dresser doesn’t help. The world and everyone in it have ideas about what she should look like: thinner, lighter, slimmer-faced, straighter-haired. Be smaller. Be whiter. Be quieter.
But there’s one person who’s always in Charlie’s corner: her best friend Amelia. Slim. Popular. Athletic. Totally dope. So when Charlie starts a tentative relationship with cute classmate Brian, the first worthwhile guy to notice her, everything is perfect until she learns one thing–he asked Amelia out first. So is she his second choice or what? Does he even really see her? UGHHH. Everything is now officially a MESS.
A sensitive, funny, and painful coming-of-age story with a wry voice and tons of chisme, Fat Chance, Charlie Vega tackles our relationships to our parents, our bodies, our cultures, and ourselves.»
7. “Love Is a Revolution” de Renée Watson
«When Nala Robertson reluctantly agrees to attend an open mic night for her cousin-sister-friend Imani’s birthday, she finds herself falling in instant love with Tye Brown, the MC. He’s perfect, except . . . Tye is an activist and is spending the summer putting on events for the community when Nala would rather watch movies and try out the new seasonal flavors at the local creamery. In order to impress Tye, Nala tells a few tiny lies to have enough in common with him. As they spend more time together, sharing more of themselves, some of those lies get harder to keep up. As Nala falls deeper into keeping up her lies and into love, she’ll learn all the ways love is hard, and how self-love is revolutionary.
In Love Is a Revolution, plus size girls are beautiful and get the attention of the hot guys, the popular girl clique is not shallow but has strong convictions and substance, and the ultimate love story is not only about romance but about how to show radical love to the people in your life, including to yourself.»
8. “If The Show Fits” de Julia Murphy
«After having just graduated with a degree in shoe design, and trying to get her feet on the ground, Cindy is working for her stepmother, who happens to be the executive producer of America’s favorite reality show, Before Midnight. When a spot on the show needs filling ASAP, Cindy volunteers, hoping it might help jump-start her fashion career, or at least give her something to do while her peers land jobs in the world of high fashion.
Turns out being the only plus size woman on a reality dating competition makes a splash, and soon Cindy becomes a body positivity icon for women everywhere. What she doesn’t expect? That she may just find inspiration-and love-in the process. Ultimately, Cindy learns that if the shoe doesn’t fit, maybe it’s time to design your own.»
9. “If It Makes You Happy” de Claire Kann
«High school finally behind her, Winnie is all set to attend college in the fall. But first she’s spending her summer days working at her granny’s diner and begins spending her midnights with Dallas—the boy she loves to hate and hates that she likes. Winnie lives in Misty Haven, a small town where secrets are impossible to keep—like when Winnie allegedly snaps on Dr. Skinner, which results in everyone feeling compelled to give her weight loss advice for her own good. Because they care that’s she’s “too fat.”
Winnie dreams of someday inheriting the diner—but it’ll go away if they can’t make money, and fast. Winnie has a solution—win a televised cooking competition and make bank. But Granny doesn’t want her to enter—so Winnie has to find a way around her formidable grandmother. Can she come out on top?»
1. “Corpo Casa” de Rupi Kaur
«Em corpo casa, rupi kaur conduz-nos numa viagem íntima e ponderada ao passado, ao presente e ao potencial do nosso eu. é um conjunto de conversas diretas e despojadas consigo mesma – e um apelo para que nos deixemos invadir pelo amor, para que nos deixemos envolver na aceitação, na comunidade, na família e abracemos a mudança. moram nesta casa luzes e sombras, tudo aquilo com que nascemos, tudo aquilo que o mundo fez de nós. com ilustrações da autora, este é o terceiro livro de rupi kaur, o maior fenómeno mundial da poesia contemporânea.
mergulho no poço do meu corpo
e acabo noutro mundo
tudo o que preciso
já existe em mim
não é preciso
procurar noutros lugares
Links de Compra:
2. “The (Other) F Word: A Celebration of the Fat and Fierce” de Angie Manfredi
«The definitive collection of art, poetry, and prose, celebrating fat acceptance
Chubby. Curvy. Fluffy. Plus-size. Thick. Fat. The time has come for fat people to tell their own stories. The (Other) F Word combines personal essays, prose, poetry, fashion tips, and art to create a relatable and attractive guide about body image and body positivity. This YA crossover anthology is meant for people of all sizes who desire to be seen and heard in a culture consumed by a narrow definition of beauty. By combining the talents of renowned fat YA and middle-grade authors, as well as fat influencers and creators, The (Other) F Word offers teen readers and activists of all ages a guide for navigating our world with confidence and courage.»
3. “Don’t Touch My Hair” de Emma Dabiri
«From Guardian contributor BBC race correspondent Emma Dabiri comes an essay collection exploring the ways in which black hair has been appropriated and stigmatized throughout history, with ruminations on body politics, race, pop culture, and Dabiri’s own journey to loving her hair.
Emma Dabiri can tell you the first time she chemically straightened her hair. She can describe the smell, the atmosphere of the salon, and her mix of emotions when she saw her normally kinky tresses fall down her shoulders. For as long as Emma can remember, her hair has been a source of insecurity, shame, and—from strangers and family alike—discrimination. And she is not alone.
Despite increasingly liberal world views, black hair continues to be erased, appropriated, and stigmatized to the point of taboo. Through her personal and historical journey, Dabiri gleans insights into the way racism is coded in society’s perception of black hair—and how it is often used as an avenue for discrimination. Dabiri takes us from pre-colonial Africa, through the Harlem Renaissance, and into today’s Natural Hair Movement, exploring everything from women’s solidarity and friendship, to the criminalization of dreadlocks, to the dubious provenance of Kim Kardashian’s braids.
Through the lens of hair texture, Dabiri leads us on a historical and cultural investigation of the global history of racism— and her own personal journey of self-love and finally, acceptance.»
4. “I Do It with the Lights On” de Whitney Way Thore
«Whitney Way Thore stands five feet two inches tall and weighs well over three hundred pounds, and she is totally, completely, and truly . . . happy. But she wasn’t always the vivacious, confident woman you see on TV. Growing up as a dancer, Whitney felt the pressure to be thin, a desire that grew into an obsession as she got older. From developing an eating disorder as a teenager, to extreme weight gain in college, to her ongoing struggle with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), Whitney reveals her fight to overcome the darkest moments in her life. She holds nothing back, opening up about the depths of her depression as well as her resilience in the face of constant harassment and mistreatment.
Now Whitney is on top of the world and taking no BS (Body Shame, of course). And she’s sharing the steps she took to get there and the powerful message behind her successful No Body Shame campaign. She even reveals her favorite “F” word (it’s probably not what you think), the thrill of doing it with the lights on, and the story behind the “Fat Girl Dancing” video that started it all.
Exuberant and utterly honest, I Do It with the Lights On is the inspiring story of how Whitney finally discovered her fabulousness when she stepped off the scale and into her life, embracing herself unconditionally—body, heart, and soul.»
5. “Everything’s Trash, But It’s Okay” de Phoebe Robinson
«Robinson’s latest essay collection is a call to arms. She tackles a wide range of topics, such as giving feminism a tough-love talk in hopes it can become more intersectional; telling society’s beauty standards to kick rocks; and demanding that toxic masculinity close its mouth and legs (enough with the manspreading already!), and get out of the way so true progress can happen.»
6. “The Beauty Myth” de Naomi Wolf
«The bestselling classic that redefined our view of the relationship between beauty and female identity. In today’s world, women have more power, legal recognition, and professional success than ever before. Alongside the evident progress of the women’s movement, however, writer and journalist Naomi Wolf is troubled by a different kind of social control, which, she argues, may prove just as restrictive as the traditional image of homemaker and wife. It’s the beauty myth, an obsession with physical perfection that traps the modern woman in an endless spiral of hope, self-consciousness, and self-hatred as she tries to fulfill society’s impossible definition of “the flawless beauty.”»
7. “Hunger” de Roxane Gay
«“I ate and ate and ate in the hopes that if I made myself big, my body would be safe. I buried the girl I was because she ran into all kinds of trouble. I tried to erase every memory of her, but she is still there, somewhere. . . . I was trapped in my body, one that I barely recognized or understood, but at least I was safe.”
In her phenomenally popular essays and long-running Tumblr blog, Roxane Gay has written with intimacy and sensitivity about food and body, using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health. As a woman who describes her own body as “wildly undisciplined,” Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she explores her past—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers along on her journey to understand and ultimately save herself.
With the bracing candor, vulnerability, and power that have made her one of the most admired writers of her generation, Roxane explores what it means to learn to take care of yourself: how to feed your hungers for delicious and satisfying food, a smaller and safer body, and a body that can love and be loved—in a time when the bigger you are, the smaller your world becomes.»
8. “Fearing the Black Body: The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia” de Sabrina Strings
«In her first book, sociologist Strings (sociology, Univ. of California, Irvine) explores the historical development of prothin, antifat ideologies deployed in support of Western, patriarchal white supremacy. Beginning in the aesthetic ideals circulated by Renaissance thinkers and artists and bringing her narrative up into the 1990s, Strings charts how white Europeans and Anglo-Americans developed ideals of race and beauty that both explicitly and figuratively juxtaposed slim, desirable white women against corpulent, seemingly monstrous black women.
The work is divided into three sections. The two chapters in the first part consider how Renaissance white women and women of color were depicted as plump and feminine, separated by class, yet belonging to the same gender. The second part of the work charts the rise of modern racial ideologies that yoked feminine beauty to Protestant, Anglo-Saxon whiteness. Later chapters and the epilogue consider how Americans normalized the “scientific management” of white women’s bodies for the purpose of racial uplift, a project that continued to situate black women as the embodied Other.
The author does not address fat from the angle of health or previous attitudes white Europeans held towards corpulence.»
9. “What We Don’t Talk About When We Talk About Fat” de Aubrey Gordon
«Anti-fatness is everywhere. In What We Don’t Talk About When We Talk About Fat, Aubrey Gordon unearths the cultural attitudes and social systems that have led to people being denied basic needs because they are fat and calls for social justice movements to be inclusive of plus-sized people’s experiences. Unlike the recent wave of memoirs and quasi self-help books that encourage readers to love and accept themselves, Gordon pushes the discussion further towards authentic fat activism, which includes ending legal weight discrimination, giving equal access to health care for large people, increased access to public spaces, and ending anti-fat violence. As she argues, I did not come to body positivity for self-esteem. I came to it for social justice.
By sharing her experiences as well as those of others–from smaller fat to very fat people–she concludes that to be fat in our society is to be seen as an undeniable failure, unlovable, unforgivable, and morally condemnable. Fatness is an open invitation for others to express disgust, fear, and insidious concern. To be fat is to be denied humanity and empathy. Studies show that fat survivors of sexual assault are less likely to be believed and less likely than their thin counterparts to report various crimes; 27% of very fat women and 13% of very fat men attempt suicide; over 50% of doctors describe their fat patients as awkward, unattractive, ugly and noncompliant; and in 48 states, it’s legal–even routine–to deny employment because of an applicant’s size.
Advancing fat justice and changing prejudicial structures and attitudes will require work from all people. What We Don’t Talk About When We Talk About Fat is a crucial tool to create a tectonic shift in the way we see, talk about, and treat our bodies, fat and thin alike.»