Big Food and the Body Politics of Personal Responsibility

  title={Big Food and the Body Politics of Personal Responsibility},
  author={Deborah Morrison Thomson},
  journal={Southern Communication Journal},
  pages={17 - 2}
  • D. Thomson
  • Published 28 January 2009
  • Sociology
  • Southern Communication Journal
Under the threat of obesity-related legal claims, food industry advocates have responded with rhetorical efforts to articulate obesity to a body politics of “personal responsibility.” This article extends Laclau and Mouffe's (1985) theory of articulation to Foucault's (1977) spectacle of the scaffold to critique verbal and visual articulatory efforts that position “personal responsibility” alongside social values such as “common sense” and “consumer choice” and against a shamed fat body. The… 
Neoliberal Backgrounding, the Meatless Monday Campaign, and the Rhetorical Intersections of Food, Nature, and Cultural Identity
This article offers a critical rhetorical ecofeminist analysis of the Meatless Monday campaign, a U.S.-based meat reduction initiative focused on public health and the environment. By examining the
Challenging stereotypes and legitimating fat: An analysis of obese people’s views on news media reporting guidelines and promoting body diversity
This article contributes to scholarship on the cultural politics of obesity by providing insights into how people considered ‘obese’ think news media reporting should be improved and their views on
Fed Up with the Personal Responsibility of Obesity: A Pentadic Analysis of Fed Up
Fed Up, the An Inconvenient Truth documentary about obesity, aimed to create a call to action against the food industry’s involvement in causing the United States’ obesity epidemic. This essay uses
Why we Should be Watching More Trash TV: Exploring the Value of an Analysis of the Makeover Show to Fat Studies Scholars
This article serves as a critical introduction to the genre of the “makeover show” as a way of encouraging the growth of a still nascent body of work. The article draws from a wider discourse
Containing Fatness: Bodies, Motherhood, and Civic Identity in Contemporary U.S. Culture
The body, and visualizations of the body, serve as a way read appropriate consumption and citizenship: Weight operates as a key way to see literal consumption. U.S. citizenship is now commonly
Making Food-Systems Policy for Local Interests and Common Good
The unjust distribution of poor health outcomes produced via current United States food systems indicates the need for inclusive and innovative policymaking at the local level. Public health and
Quantifying elements of contemporary fat discourse: The development and validation of the Fat Attitudes Assessment Toolkit
The majority of instruments designed to measure attitudes toward fatness and “obesity” were developed in the 1990s, a time when the “obesity epidemic” was gaining attention. As a consequence, they
Viewing The Biggest Loser: modes of reception and reflexivity among obese people
This article builds on previous reception research and scholarship on makeover TV through an analysis of obese people's views of The Biggest Loser (TBL). TBL involves obese people competing to lose
Anti-Corporate Argument and the Spectacle of the Grotesque Rhetorical Body in Super Size Me
This essay examines how the documentary Super Size Me (2004) renders the body a site of anti-corporate resistance. My close reading intervenes in a debate on the value of Bakhtin's notion of
Articulating Fatness: Obesity and the Scientific Tautologies of Bodily Accumulation in Neoliberal Times
The numbers on obesity are in: They are alarming, and they are climbing. From the first meeting of the Obesity Association in London in 1967 through to when the United States Surgeon General, C.


The McLawsuit: the fast-food industry and legal accountability for obesity.
This paper considers the reasonableness of the claims against fast-food companies and discusses several social effects that the litigation may have irrespective of its outcome in court.
Framing Obesity
The public debate on obesity will turn on the question of who or what is responsible for causing and curing this emerging epidemic. Previous research suggests that public health problems become
Food Fight: The Inside Story of the Food Industry, America's Obesity Crisis, and What We Can Do About It.
The authors argue that the authors' hunter-gatherpast has given us a metabolismtuned to storing calories in times of Plenty while modern agriculture provides many with perpetual caloric plenty, and changing the food environment will be both easier and more successful than changing human biology.
Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison
This writer who has warned us of the “ideological” function of both the oeuvre and the author as unquestioned forms of discursive organization has gone quite far in constituting for both these
Unbearable Weight: Feminism, Western Culture, and the Body
In this provocative book, Susan Bordo untangles the myths, ideologies, and pathologies of the modern female body. Bordo explores our tortured fascination with food, hunger, desire, and control, and
Hegemony and Socialist Strategy: Towards a Radical Democratic Politics
In this hugely influential book, Laclau and Mouffe examine the workings of hegemony and contemporary social struggles, and their significance for democratic theory. With the emergence of new social
Betrayal of Trust: The Collapse of Global Public Health
  • Ron Gray
  • Political Science
    Nature Medicine
  • 2001
Laurie Garret is a journalist who has written extensively on health. The central argument of her book is that public health is a “public good”, providing communitylevel protection from infectious
Fat Land : How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World
This is an account of the history and biology of the fattening of America at the moment when it is emerging as a political issue too.
Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World
  • F. Charatan
  • Computer Science
    BMJ : British Medical Journal
  • 2003
Greg Critser Houghton Mifflin, $24, pp 232 ISBN 0 618 16472 3 ![][1] To order, see Rating: ![Graphic][2] ![Graphic][3] ![Graphic][4] ![Graphic][5] James
III. REMNANTS OF AUSCHWITZ: The Witness and the Archive
A philosophical study of the testimony of the survivors of Auschwitz. In this book the Italian philosopher Giorgio Agamben looks closely at the literature of the survivors of Auschwitz, probing the