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Lessons from the Fat-o-sphere: Quit Dieting and Declare a Truce with Your Body Paperback – May 5, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Perigee Trade; 1 edition (May 5, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399534970
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399534973
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 5.2 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #199,243 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Kate Harding founded Kate Harding's Shapely Prose (kateharding.net), a blog about body acceptance and the treatment of fat people in the media.

Marianne Kirby's is dedicated to body politics and fat acceptance. She is co-moderator of the Livejournal community Fatshionista, which has more than 2,500 members. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Kate Harding is co-author of "Lessons from the Fat-o-Sphere: Quit Dieting and Declare a Truce with Your Body" and founder of what was for a time the internet's most popular body acceptance blog, Shapely Prose. She has contributed to numerous online publications, including Salon, Jezebel, The Guardian, and the L.A. Times, and published essays in the anthologies "Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and a World Without Rape" (a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2009), and "Feed Me: Writers Dish About Food, Eating, Weight and Body Image."

A graduate of the University of Toronto and the MFA in writing program at Vermont College of Fine Arts, she lives in Chicago with her husband and an old mutt. She is at work on a novel.

[Photo by Becky Hill]

Customer Reviews

The writing style is awesome--funny and no-nonsense, very personable and easy to read.
Kelly Tessena
As much as Fat-o-Sphere speaks out against changing your lifestyle, they do keep saying to eat more healthy foods and do more active things.
Lisa Shea
I'm having extreme fun and meeting lots of men (some amazing, some ok, some crazy) who delight in my glamorous heft.
elemenoP

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

147 of 159 people found the following review helpful By elemenoP on May 6, 2009
Format: Paperback
This book got me a date.

Seriously. I was lucky enough to read an advanced copy (but I still bought the finished book as a show of appreciation and support). I was 6 months out of a relationship and feeling anxious about putting my girthful self out into the cruel world of dating. I decided I would take the leap in the spring AFTER I'd lost 50 pounds. Then I read Fat-O-Sphere. It made me feel strong. If I was happy and successful and active and feeling great, why not embrace it? Being fat did not negate all those really good things. So I promptly began online dating. And it worked. I'm having extreme fun and meeting lots of men (some amazing, some ok, some crazy) who delight in my glamorous heft. I am beyond grateful to Marianne and Kate for writing a book that helped me stop feeling ashamed and guilty and confused.

Health at every size, peace of mind at every size, happiness at any size--that's what this book advocates, explains and encourages.
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116 of 126 people found the following review helpful By R. C. Gold on May 6, 2009
Format: Paperback
This book is funny, witty, engaging, and most of all educational. As the authors say, a lot of what the book is about seems like common sense, but it's so hard to start thinking that way about your body, especially for women. Whether you are are fat or not, whether you are a chronic dieter or not, this book is really fabulous for helping you let you of your self-hate and starting to accept yourself and your body for who and what they are. I hope it's a trend that catches on with more women in media.
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110 of 122 people found the following review helpful By Corinna on May 6, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am so excited to read this book. Kate and Marianne's blogs are leaders in a movement that is key for women's sanity and the general culture's sanity around body image and health. Thanks to them I stopped obsessing over food and started practicing intuitive eating and guess what? I haven't gained weight and I feel much better focusing my energy on other things. (BTW, I have never been what comment trolls would probably consider "fat," but I have never felt like my body is socially acceptable either. I still don't think so, but these wonderful bloggers have taught me it's much more fun not to care.) I'm buying four copies of this book to share with women who are dear to me.
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55 of 64 people found the following review helpful By S. E. Sarliker on May 7, 2009
Format: Paperback
This book made me giggle, cringe in self-recognition, nod in agreement and cheer.
If you are dead-set on hating yourself, this isn't the book for you. But if you've been thinking that maybe those crazy fat acceptance folks have a point about dieting not working, you are ready to sit down and listen to two honest, caring girlfriends who will tell it like it is.
No, it's not all unicorns and cotton candy, accepting your body and yourself is hard work, it's just a different (and more rewarding) kind of work than what restricting your eating and exercising as punishment are. This book provides some specific direction and resources for feeling better about, and connected to it, taking better care of, your body.
If you aren't female, you might not feel like you are being spoken to directly, the way that I did when I read it, but if you have women in your lives (moms, friends, girlfriends, wives, sisters) who could use some reinforcement in the body love department, this book may make a great gift (but not for someone who will feel insulted by the word "fat-o-sphere").
I know the authors couldn't include everything in the whole world of fat acceptance in the book, but if you want to know more about intuitive eating, I also recommend "The Diet Survivor's Handbook: 60 Lessons in Eating, Acceptance and Self-Care."
I know I'll be glad I have this book on my shelf during those times when my acceptance muscles are feeling fatigued -- girlfriends Kate and Marianne (and special guests) will be there to remind me of what I need to do to get back on the path to good self care.
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50 of 58 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Stinner on May 6, 2009
Format: Paperback
Whether or not you're already hip to the ideas that 1.) it is possible to be healthy, beautiful and fabulous at any size and 2.) weight is not an indicator of moral character, this is a fantastic read. With keen intelligence and razor-sharp wit, Kate Harding and Marianne Kirby hit on a variety of topics, including the science and philosophy behind a HAES (Health at Every Size) lifestyle, reading medical studies with a critical eye, and even just finding clothes that look great. They give suggestions for navigating through fitting rooms, doctors offices, and even the dating scene with your sanity intact. Several guest essays sprinkled through the chapters bring a variety of experiences and insights to the mix.

Naysayers may believe that the Fat-O-Sphere exists to make excuses for gluttony and laziness, but this is simply not so. If losing weight were an easy prospect, people wouldn't spend their lives caught in the throes of yo-yo dieting, weight cycling and shame. The book includes an extremely powerful essay by Barbara Benesch-Granberg, whose mother began avoiding doctors after constant lectures and shaming. Her hesitance to seek medical attention on the basis that any problem she might have would be chalked up to her weight ended up costing her life.

Harding and Kirby suggest an intuitive approach to eating and taking pleasure in physical activity purely for the purposes of health betterment, regardless of weight.
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