The Scarlet & Black

The Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

FAC combats body image stereotypes

This Saturday will mark the end of a week that invited students to honor and respect their bodies. Sponsored by the Feminist Action Coalition (FAC) each year, Love Your Body Week aims to combat negative body image stereotypes for both women and men.

Clothing-optional is a term that is widely used to describe many of the events for the week, which included a clothing-optional photo shoot and as well as upcoming clothing-optional baking (Friday at 4:15 p.m.) and yoga (Saturday at 1 p.m.).

“We do a lot of clothing-optional stuff, which is tied into the fat acceptance movement. We do a lot of talking about that,” said Hannah Kapp-Klote ’13, one of the organizers.

The Clothing-Optional Photo Shoot in Main Lounge occurred Monday night. People were invited to take off as many or as few clothing items as they felt comfortable with and were able to have intimate photos taken. Some individuals even had “family portraits” taken of their group of friends. The atmosphere was not awkward or judgmental, but rather very positive and comfortable, enforcing the event’s emphasis on having positive body images.

Fat acceptance is another subject that was discussed this Thursday during the Vegan Co-op, where an informal discussion about the relationship between food and bodies was held. The discussion addressed critical questions, such as how to promote healthy eating while rejecting fat-phobia and how systems of oppression affect our relationships with food—that is, how sexism and sizeism intersect to influence how we feel about eating.

Embracing your body in this manner promotes being comfortable with yourself, and equally important is that fact that it is meant to be fun.

“This week is something the FAC does every year, and it’s kind of a fun week, compared to some of our more, I guess, political activities, because when you’re loving your body, you’re meant to do a lot of fun things—like eat snacks. We have a masturbation workshop every year. And we do things like the consent workshop,” Kapp-Klote said.

Among the events was a movie screening of Real Women Have Curves, a film that addresses the intersection between race, class and body image.

“It definitely created a good image, and a good self-acceptance of your body, regardless of your body type. … I feel more positive. It definitely sent a good message,” said one viewer.

“A lot of the time when we talk about body image and gender and how the two things are intrinsically related, we don’t end up talking about race and class—which is really an important part of any discussion of media awareness and body image,” said Kapp-Klote. “Often you have this white, [upper-class] body standard as being defined. [The movie] deals with race and class, and sometimes those things get overlooked when you talk about body image.”

One of the events many Grinnellians look forward to every year are the male- and female-identified masturbation workshops that took place Thursday evening. The facilitators focused on the anatomy of the body and obliterating the taboo associated with masturbation so that everyone can partake in its benefits. Handouts with diagrams were distributed to show and label the proper anatomy as well as hot tips. The groups broke up into smaller groups to share stories and ask questions. There were also fun games and prizes given away.

The FAC urges you to take part in the remaining events of Love Your Body Week on Friday and Saturday afternoon.

View Comments (1)
More to Discover
Donate to The Scarlet & Black
Our Goal

Comments (1)

All The Scarlet & Black Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • F

    Freddie GandolfiDec 20, 2010 at 3:45 am

    What a good post! This tip is very constructive for me. Thank you!