Dangerous Bodies: Blackness, Fatness, and the Masculinity Dividend

Marta Usiekniewicz

Uniwersytet Warszawski



Contemporary obesity epidemic discourse galvanizes racism and classism under the veil of “care,” and is used to further stigmatize mostly poor people of color. I examine the intersection of fatness, race, and masculinity to show how in the case of black male bodies fatness is criminalized and used to legitimize excessive violence inflicted on those bodies. I discuss the oftentimes conflicting projections attached to fat black male bodies to analyze the mechanism that enable not just the criminalization of race and poverty, but also of fatness in the American culture of personal responsibility. I also discuss the unacknowledged racial and gender biases or fat studies, which partially impede the analysis of non-white non-female bodies.


Keywords: race; masculinity; fatness; masculinity; dividend; disability