Fatphobia is so rampantly internalized that many people feel the need to justify their attraction to fat people by comparing them to non-human objects and creatures.
Though the intention might not be to insult, this behavior is still deeply objectifying and dehumanizing. It insinuates that fat people aren’t beautiful or sexually attractive to others unless there is something beyond human about their bodies.
It turns the possibility of mutual desire and appreciation into fetish.
In her poem “Dead Men Can’t Catcall,” Samantha Peterson points out the harmful nuance of these supposedly metaphorical compliments and reclaims her body’s agency, humanity, and beauty.
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Check out these Everyday Feminism articles on fat love and body acceptance for more information:
- 9 Facts That Shatter Bullsh*t Stereotypes About Fat People
- How to Find the Beauty in Fat
- Fat, Trans, and (Working on Being) Fine With It
- Why It’s Okay To Be Fat
- Busting Myths about Fat Bodies
Samantha Peterson is a writer, slam poet, body positive warrior, em dash enthusiast, and graduate of Lewis & Clark. Please follow her on twitter at @Izzashark. Video courtesy of Button Poetry. For more amazing spoken word performances, check them out on YouTube and Facebook.