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Fattily Ever After by Stephanie Yeboah - Review

Friday, October 9, 2020

 

As you may know, I am a fat woman, and I like to read books about fat people, both fictional and non fictional. I have a tag for the books I've read about fat people. Some are much better than others. I find it difficult when thin people write about us, because they often don't know what it's like to live in a fat body and they write about us in really grotesque ways (this is one of the reasons I hate Every Day by David Levithan...). So when a fat person writes a book about radical fat acceptance, I often buy it because I want to support that person, I want there to be more books by fat people, and I know that we are marginalised and need all the support we can get. 

I know OF Stephanie although I don't know her personally. She's a clothes blogger and we have several friends in common. I like her style, she always looks amazing. So when I saw that she was writing a book at her body and fatness and radical fat acceptance, I immediately ordered it. It arrived at the end of August and I picked it up almost immediately too. 

A lot of the political stuff isn't particularly new to me, but Stephanie wrote about it in a way that is really accessible for people to whom fat acceptance is a new concept. Stephanie writes about her experiences as a fat child and a fat adult, which I really liked. Plus, she's black, meaning there's an extra layer to her marginalisation, one that I have never experienced and never will and which I liked reading and learning more about. I liked Stephanie's careful dissemination of the intersections of fatness and race and how both have affected her life. She's younger than me, and came to fat acceptance in the early 2010s when she started her blog, which is slightly after me but the story of which really resonated with me. I liked reading about her journey and where she is now on her path, and how she encouraged others - especially fat black womxn - to walk alongside her. One thing I've learnt is that thanks to society and the media we are bombarded with anti-fat messages every day, and even though I am a confident person I sometimes get down about my body and have to remind myself why actually I am free to live my life however I see fit. Reading books like this is almost a medicine against all the fat shaming I encounter - it's like a little booster and I come away feeling positive and rejuvenised. 

The book is really colourful - there's lots of patterned pages and lots of pull out quotes printed big, which are both eye catching and serve as a radical manifesto for Stephanie and lots of us like her. There's also some truly gorgeous illustrations which add to the words gorgeously. Stephanie writes in a fun and funny way, meaning that while this book touches on a lot of radical concepts, it's not at all dry or academic. I really liked this book, and would recommend it to anyone! 

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