20 January 2012

Introducing Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society

I'm absolutely delighted to announce that the first edition of Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society has been published. I am a member of the editorial board for this journal, and my article about queering fat activism through my Queer and Trans Fat Activist Timeline project is published in the first issue.

Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society is, in academic-speak, a peer-reviewed interdisciplinary journal. Peer-review is the gold standard of academic publishing, it means that each article has been through a rigorous process of review by other people who work in the field so that it represents high quality work, basically the cutting edge.

Unfortunately, like most academic journals, you can't go and buy this at a shop. It's available to students and scholars through academic and major libraries, part of a wider process of keeping ideas away from the plebs, or at least away from people who can't afford tuition fees. Non-students can buy articles or issues, but it can be pricey. If you want to read this journal and can't get access, drop me a line and I'll do my best to help.

Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society is not the first journal to explore more radical views of fatness. Let's not forget the important work by Frances Berg and the Healthy Weight Journal, and later Jon Robison with Health At Every Size. But what Fat Studies does is shift critical and scholarly discussions of fatness out of health or 'Obesity Epidemic' and into a much broader arena where things like culture, community, rights, embodiment can be addressed. This new publication is an important moment in developing ideas about what it is to be fat and, unlike the odd conference or course, it's ongoing and international.

Let's hear loud applause for Esther Rothblum, the journal's editor, and also the co-editor of The Fat Studies Reader. Her commitment to generating new dialogue about fatness is second-to-none. If you're not excited about this journal then you probably don't even know you're born!

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