Book: Fat phobia arose from racism and religion

Our culture's fat phobia has deep cultural and religious roots, a new book argues.
black woman in "open your mind" shirt does yoga bend on rooftop

A new book explores the religious and racial origins of society’s obsession with thinness.

In Fearing the Black Body: The Racial Origins of Fat Phobia (NYU Press, 2019), Sabrina Strings, assistant professor of sociology at the University of California, Irvine discusses the stigma of larger—primarily female—body types and how deep racial and religious roots, rather than health concerns, led Western society to favor the lean.

Here, she weighs in on how slimness became popular and the centuries-long repercussions of this ideal for women of all shapes, colors, and sizes:

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