By Isabel Foxen Duke

I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Virgie Tovar, a fat activist.

Or “fatty.”

(I <3 language reclaimation; let’s please remove stigma from the word “fat” once and for all.)

And, let me tell you, she is a BadAss.

She and her cohort are challenging fat stigma (both the kind we have for other people, and the kind we have for ourselves) from a political and cultural viewpoint, rather than relegating the problem to something women deal with only on an individual level (i.e. low self-esteem). 

She created this bomb video about “internalized fat phobia” which completely shifted my world.

In the video she discusses how women (and people) are socialized into hating and judging “non-traditional” (i.e. fat – there, I said it) body types, and how individuals can break free of their own “internalized fat-phobia.”

(PS – her whole show, Virgie’s Guide to Fat Girl Living is killer.)

She takes a decidedly political/sociological approach to explaining how one develops and releases “fat-phobia,” drawing parallels from critical race theory and feminist activism, which challenged me to ask, to what extent is body positivity a political movement (like any other social movement) vs. a responsibility of the individual? Are we at the forefront of first-wave fat-activism in bloom? Are we beginning to see history being made?

In an interview I conducted with Virgie today, Virgie made the point that because fat-shaming and fat-judgement are so deeply “part of our culture,” loving our bodies, is decidedly counter-culture. 

That is, accepting your body at any size, is rad.

It’s a political statement, whether you like it or not. And when we realize that our desires both to be confident at any size and to have big lives regardless of our weight, we inadvertently propel the movement forward and make strides in combatting fat-phobia for women everywhere.

So, do it.

Love your body. Live a big life regardless of the size of your ass.

Do it for women everywhere.

Love your thighs, so your daughter can love hers one day.





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