10th Annual Weight Stigma Conference

Home » Uncategorized » FYI. CFP: Special issue of Fat Studies – Standpoint theory in fat studies

FYI. CFP: Special issue of Fat Studies – Standpoint theory in fat studies


Special Issue of Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society on Standpoint Theory in Fat Studies, edited by Laurie Cooper Stoll (lcstoll@uwlax.edu) and Darci Thoune (dthoune@uwlax.edu).

To be considered for inclusion in this special issue, please send a 200-250 word abstract to Laurie Cooper Stoll at lcstoll@uwlax.edu by August 1, 2018.  Any questions should also be directed to this e-mail address.

The voices of fat people are often marginalized or excluded altogether when it comes to larger discussions of fat and “obesity” in our culture.  This includes the voices of those of us that do work in fat studies who are fat ourselves.  As Abigail Saguy (2013) points out, “Regardless of how many advanced degrees they have, researchers run the risk of being discredited if they themselves are fat, not only for all of the reasons that fatness is generally discrediting but also because they are perceived as biased” (35).  Standpoint theorists have long asserted the importance of positionality when it comes to engaging in research and activism.  According to Charlotte Cooper (2016: 32), “Who researches fat people and who creates knowledge about fatness is important.”  As such, Cooper argues we should take seriously the epistemology derived from fat people’s own experiences, yet “at present there is a gap between the objects and producers of knowledge. Standpoint, a researcher’s attitude and relationship to the research subject, tends to receive poor attention, perhaps a paragraph or sentence or two” (33).  This special issue on Standpoint Theory in Fat Studies seeks to address this shortcoming in the literature by centering the voices of fat scholars and activists.  Specifically, it takes up the questions:

1)      What does it mean to do fat studies as a fat scholar and/or fat activist?

2)      How does our social location as fat researchers and activists influence the types of research we conduct and/or the types of activism we engage in?

3)      How do we situate ourselves in relationship to our work?

4)      And how do we connect our work back to our everyday lived experiences?

In order to advance our understanding of the importance of standpoint theory in fat studies, we seek manuscripts that respond to the above questions using an intersectional lens that also considers the impact of race, class, gender, sexuality, ability status, and/or other systems of inequality on fat scholars and activists.  Final submissions should be between 3000-6000 words, including all notes and references. If you wish to include reproductions of visual images with your essay, you will need to receive permission to do so from the artists/copyright holders of the image(s).  All authors will need to sign a form that transfers copyright of their article to the publisher, Taylor & Francis/Routledge.

Fat Studies is the first academic journal in the field of scholarship that critically examines theory, research, practices, and programs related to body weight and appearance. Content includes original research and overviews exploring the intersection of gender, race/ethnicity, sexuality, age, ability, and socioeconomic status. Articles critically examine representations of fat in health and medical sciences, the Health at Every Size model, the pharmaceutical industry, psychology, sociology, cultural studies, legal issues, literature, pedagogy, art, theater, popular culture, media studies, and activism.

Fat Studies is an interdisciplinary, international field of scholarship that critically examines societal attitudes and practices about body weight and appearance. Fat Studies advocates equality for all people regardless of body size. It explores the way fat people are oppressed, the reasons why, who benefits from that oppression and how to liberate fat people from oppression. Fat Studies seeks to challenge and remove the negative associations that society has about fat and the fat body. It regards weight, like height, as a human characteristic that varies widely across any population. Fat Studies is similar to academic disciplines that focus on race, ethnicity, gender, or age.