#242: Anti-Racism Resources, and Repost of #113: How to Cultivate Radical Body Love with Sonya Renee Taylor
welcome to food, sake the podcast about intuitive eating health, every size, body, liberation, and taking down Diet, culture. I'm your host Chris Harrison and an anti diet registered. Dietitian certified intuitive eating counselor at author of the Book Anti Diet. Join me here every week as I talked with fellow anti diet advocates about their journeys toward peace with food in their bodies. And by the way on this show, we bleep out diet culture stuff like wait and calorie numbers, but we don't censor swear words or other adult language, so listener discretion is advised. Uh. Hebert welcome to food sake I. AM Christy Harrison and I'm recording this on June second of twenty twenty, when there is a revolution happening for racial justice, and I'm so here for it because I believe that black lives matter and I support justice for George Floyd and Brianna Taylor and RB. And Tony mcdade and all the other black people who've had their lives taken from them over the years through the racist actions of police and vigilantes, and this racist murder has to stop so honor of the movement to defend black lives, and also in recognition of the fact that the Anti Diet Movement must also be an anti-racist movement because. Is Built on a foundation of racism as you heard in the episode with Sabrina strings that I reposted last week. This week. I wanted to re post another. With a brilliant black thinker and writer who speaks to some of the racial justice issues that are connected to this anti at work. This interviews from three years ago in July of twenty seven team, and it's with amazing writer and body Liberation Activists Sonya, Renee Taylor. Sonia has been instrumental in helping make the eating disorders and body positivity space, more aware of racism at its intersections with Diet Culture and eating disorders for a long time. She's been doing this work for many years I. I heard of her and. And saw her in two thousand fifteen when she was presenting at eating. Disorders Conference and so I want to honor her contribution to this work and to this field and make sure that you all go check out her work. Her website is Sonya. Renee Taylor Dot. com and she has a great book called. The body is not an apology that I. highly recommend reading as well. So in this interview that we did three years ago, we discussed why we need more radical body love in the world how to deal with weight gain and weight stigma while learning intuitive eating, what means stream body positivity get so wrong why understanding oppression and racism and intersecting identities is key to creating a world that's truly body positive and truly liberated how to navigate diet culture as a body acceptance activists how to begin to untangle internalized oppression, and so much more. It's a great conversation. I cannot wait to share it with you in just. Just a moment I'm not going to be answering listener question this week because I want to use this time to share some resources for folks who like me are still learning about anti-racism and working to do better, and that's not everyone listening. There are some folks here who are already so far into the anti-racist work and don't need these resources and are leading the way and I wanna thank you for doing that work. Especially, my black listeners and other listeners of color who've been on the front lines of this antiracism work for so long. So, thank you for your work. And to all my black listeners I wanNA send you empathy and compassion and support for what you're going through in this difficult time and descend solidarity, and to say that black lives matter and I'm with you in whatever way I can be. And for those of you, listening who have the unearned social privilege that comes with being white or white passing in this racist culture I wanNA. Call on you to start and or continue engaging in a practice of anti-racism in whatever way you can, because we truly cannot work for body liberation if we're not working for antiracism and I think on a Taylor does such a great job of explaining that her notion of radical body positivity that you'll hear about in a moment I am by. No means an expert on anti-racism as As I'm sure you can imagine right. I'm someone with white privilege. For the last several years I have been making a conscious effort to learn about anti-racism and to unlearn the racist culture that we're all born into, but you know I realized recently with this latest uprising that my anti-racist efforts had become a little passive had become not as active as I would like them to be and I'll talk more about that in the interview airing next week with Mony Melton because I, think she has some really important perspectives on that. Also I'm a white person with a lifetime of being steeped in this racist culture as so many of us are so I'll probably always be on learning, but I'm committed to making the effort and to listening to and learning from people who know way more about this stuff than I do. So from a perspective of someone who's very much still learning, I wanted to share a few resources that I've found helpful in my anti-racism education. I'm giving some sort of more general racism resources. Because as I'm recording this I don't know where the revolution will be. By the time you hear this episode I don't know what's going to be needed on the grounds. I wanted to just give you a few places to start people. People to follow to learn more get more information on social media and all that stuff so i. a couple of books that I love so you WanNa talk about race bypassed food site gassed Joma Aluko. It's a wonderful starting point a wonderful jumping off point if you are new to antiracism work and she even says like that's what she recommends it for. She wants to be a first step for people, not an end point. an anti-racist by Abram ex. Candy is also a wonderful book and he also says like. Stop reading. My Book. Take that as a starting point and go from there and take use it to take action. Just think that the reading reading of the book is the only action me and white supremacy is a great book by Layla F- Saad. That is a little bit more of an active workbook type book. That's going to ask you to do actions along the way, and by the way all of these authors are great people to follow on social media as well so we're GONNA put links to their social media, and the show notes for this episode may recommend going and following them on twitter and instagram all the places. And then there are some other folks that I recommend checking out who have online courses and other good online resources to check out. I is Rachel cargo. She's at Rachel. Cargo on instagram will put a link to that in the show notes. She has an awesome ongoing. anti-racism chorus called the great unlearn, and you can find her online at Rachel cargo. Dot Com cargo. Is C. A. R., G. L. E. Rachel is just felt the usual the common way. Andrea Rene Johnson is also a great writer and educator to follow on social media and to learn from her courses. She has a new course called whole self liberation. That's really great for anyone who runs any kind of business, but especially coaching businesses, Dietitians, therapists people who want to help create a liberated world, and yet also are working within this unfortunate system of capitalism like how to build a business and survive doing this work while also honoring people's needs and helping create a more liberated world. You can find her at Andrea Rene. Rene J on Instagram and at Andrea Rene Dot Com, and it's just Andrea the usual way, and then rene is R. A. N.. A. E. will put a link to that in the show notes to to her website. Monique Melton is another good anti-racism educator to follow on social media and take classes from has classes on her website at Monique Melton Dot Com, and I signed up for one the other day, and she'll also be on next week's episode of the Podcast, which is a great one to listen to about. About anti-racism, and also just the intersection of racism and Diet Culture, so that's coming out next week. Definitely recommend tuning into that, and then if you WANNA learn more about concrete actions, you can take for the uprising rebellion, especially as someone who benefits from white privilege. If you're kind of like new protesting and organizing a good place to start is showing up for racial justice there at showing up for Racial Justice Dot Org if you're maybe less nude organizing, and you want to dive in and join a local black lives matter. Matter chapter, that is also a helpful way to support the movement, and just do the actions that they recommend help. Support them. If you google black lives, matter and the name of your city or the nearest large city to you, you should be able to find them so I will be back to answering listener questions sometime soon in probably the coming weeks, and if you want to submit your own question for a chance to have it answered on an upcoming episode, you can do that at Christie Harrison dot com slash questions. That's Christie Harrison dot com slash questions. Now without any further ado, let's go to my conversation with Sonya Renee Taylor, which was originally published on July seventeenth two thousand, seventeen as episode number one thirteen. So. Tell me about your relationship with food. Growing up so I come from a mid. West, family African American family were from Pittsburgh Pennsylvania and food was A. Very much a part of. Our culture or way of being in relationship with one another. My mother was a phenomenal cook, certainly not a healthy cook. There is lots of Fried Greasy buttery deliciousness happening in my house and there wasn't a lot of talk in my family about like healthy food. There was a lot more conversation about. Managing size, not getting too big league, where I come from a family of big women and so. The work was always about not becoming too big, and so there was. A dieting culture in my family, but it was very crash diety. Airy, Oh, now we're doing the cabbage water diet and then the next week. We're having MEATLOAF slathering him crazy. was there. I wouldn't say that there was A. An experience of balance. It was very sort of either. We are eating whatever we eat. However we eat or we're dieting. Very all or nothing very all or nothing, very all or nothing, and did you get on the Diet train young like? Did you start dieting with them, or was it? Something like the adults? Did this dieting thing and you sort of know? When my grandmother one period I lived with my grandmother, my mother didn't Diet. She was pretty small most of my childhood. She didn't gain weight until she got there, but my grandmother was heavier and. So when she dieted dieted because. You're on the you know. He was on the cabbage soup week log diet allows. The carrots. And if there was awesome as idea of wanting to do it with my grandma, you know. Something about the belt to meal and communal about would alternate. Disordered eating. and. How did that affect your relationship with your body? I think that. Because my family, because my family always had big breasts and big guys, big hips, a curve, naturally curvy women and In my community. That was okay to appoint was always kind of the like it was okay if you were thick quote, unquote, which can be too thick and so. As a young person. I developed early like I'm sort of got the Taylor boobs and but. Around eleven years old, and so I started seeing relationship with my body as sort of social capital social capital that I needed to match. Attention and it got me and my friends rides home from. The Amusement Park I think you know like into there is a way in which I got a lot of attention because my body was looked very adult. Teenager and there was also a very clear need to regulate this commodity. Were you conscious of that. Was it sort of? Something that you recognize you have the ability to manipulate, or was that not until later that you sort of saw that for what it was. No, I think I I think I recognized it pretty early, because I was not a particularly popular kid in elementary and junior high, and then I had a body, and then I was a little bit more popular in the world and I made the connection. That there were ways in which my body was a currency. And I remember my cousin has passed away now. He's a year and a half older than me. We sort of had this very brother sister relationship. said to me, it's not that people like you because you're the only like you because of your body. I think I was like sixteen when he said Bat, and it's like it was one of those things I stuck along time in making though. There is a way in which my body is my value in so because value there's there are some really particular ways it has to be and I think that that notion definitely later on in my life of Cami on Yo-yo dieting. Those sorts of things. For sure, yeah, any sort of sense that you could step out of line and things will fall apart is exactly like fuel for the fire dieting exactly and we're Yo Yo dieting mentor out your teenage years two or not come to later. Probably didn't come until later. Yeah, I don't have a lot of memories in my teenage years of dieting, I was Kinda. Naturally our glass and Stained that way for a while then. Until my late teams, and then I remember being for food, concerned, but still not dieting. Probably until like my early twenties when it was like Oh, you can join weight watchers. Are you controlling? Weight loss, or you can join Jenny Craig and actually had a little bit of disposable income that I was doing more that. Yeah, what do you think I made you conscious of your body and wanting to change it? I think that I mean as I got older. I noticed that I was starting to gain weight. And there was this sense of your on the line of being too big in, so you have the monitor it outside you know, and also there was a lot of talk, but know there's always the station the freshmen. You go with the college, and so there's all this kind of. Don't get too big. And I ended up going to a school were a lot of the girls were very thin. Attractive Girls, which made me more hyper aware of my is injected edition two. Left the community where where my body was commodity and. moved to a space where that was less so I was really aware of that. And what was that like for you? I mean college in general was just really difficult I was putting myself through school in also working full time, and also already not the norm and in terms of the risk is students. That I was going to school with and I also physically wasn't the norm, so it was a very isolating time. It was a very isolating time. Yeah, that does sound isolating and Mike disconnected you from the college experience. Yes, I definitely would say my college experience of survival. Of the college experience whatever we were mansize that, too. Right yeah, that stereotypical kind of extended adolescence or something sounds like you didn't get that. Much. Yeah, and so, what do you think that was the catalyst? Then for starting to take dieting more seriously like okay, I'm GonNa do this Dieter, join weight watchers, or whatever yeah. I definitely think there was a lot of pressure either. Direct or indirect? Number. At a boyfriend at the time you. I just started like we. Was My first serious boyfriend? Adolescents and we have this period of time where we had a brief break up in, he was dating someone else and I don't remember the context of the conversation, but I remember him saying. That part of his fear of. Serious with me that I would be I would get fat when I got older. So again there are these jazz sorta moments along the way it's solidified. The like I needed to not get any bigger or You need to stay at this line as I took this job. Right out of college as a wilderness counselor for kids with emotional and behavioral problems were literally moved to the woods and lived in so. made the. Tense made out of trees and work. Wow them, but part of my reasoning. When is sort of ask? Why am I doing nets? And it was like a WanNa. Save money I want to prove I can do something I don't know. I can do like. Go live in the woods. WanNa lose pounds. Johnson definitely part of my views inning going to live in the woods. Ma. And opposite another place where that sort of all or nothing way of being in relationship with my body weight and booed was really normalized because when we were at work, which is like five days a week twenty four hours a day living on campsite. Exceptionally, active life and there was very. You know specific amount of calories. They gave the kids every day. And that's what you made. And and then on the weekends. When you had your time off, it would be like just over the top decadence and ridiculous a drinking. So there was this berry sort of swing back and forth that again just got very normalized. Yeah, it sounds almost like it mimics the restrict bench cycle of dieting, or the yeah, the sort of like the Cheat Day concept that's now so popular in diets exactly and that was our weekends are weekends. Jeep Begins Ray. Yeah so did that sort of cycle than continue or did that drive you further into the obsession with dieting, restricting kind of locking down in certainly made me so I ended up losing. Pounds, or something like that, and over the course of the year. That worked there. And I remember it being so aware of the difference again in attention. With towns on without. Out. But I've never been I'm not a particularly disciplined human being so so so. Diet! It's never really worked out well. Auto particularly. So, even as I noticed myself, gaining the weight back after I left that job, but I I was aware of it in concerned about it, but not doing anything about it, or maybe maybe I did back to. Accounting points or something like that man. I would stop. So yeah, it was just very much. This sort of if we stay annual cycle of our a act after trying to get back on the wash train right right and yes, so common right like people because we're not designed to be able to sustain weight loss for any period of time, so it's so normal for your body to just drive you back to what it wanted to be. And then you feel like it's your problem your fault. Like. Why better do this other diet? Then I better. Work Harder. Work harder yeah yeah, it's amazing. How insidious that! Is, and how like you know I've heard the argument that if there was another product. That had a ninety five percent failure radio. Right Right, right? We would not blame ourselves. We will blame the product. There'd be class action lawsuit thousand. The market. Right exactly yeah, but somehow he just come to blame ourselves for diets, not working. Yeah, SORTA insidious. Yes, so that was like your early twenties, said yes, I would say the sort of being on the Diet train stayed. Until my late twenties and then. Add singularly actually. Early Thirties mid-2000s is when I stopped. Right gave weight watchers. My last twenty dollars vanish. And then I. Still Care. Still noticed that I was gaining weight, and still had judgment about it, and but wasn't. Actively I think I was starting to give some consciousness of doubt just how much! Waste the time this process was I think I was starting to be like, but you. It never stays off and you're not really happy doing mess and. It isn't working. So why are you still doing this I think those questions started to form in my early thirties. That's when I found performance poetry go I ended up in this kind of counter cultural world where it was okay. Big Question, some of these ideas and I think that is when I started to divest from is sort of normative idea of like what weight needs to be. That's interesting. Was it were a fat acceptance sort of thread in that community, or was it just like generally opening up to questioning everything about life I? Think it was generally opening up to questioning everything about life. I know that somewhere in their early on maybe. Came across Maryland, Juan's book Fatso infielder elicit just thinking about these things in a way that I had not gone about them before and I remember was a poet and she. I can't remember her name today, but she was fat, and she had a beard, and she wrote about her body, being her politics, and it was the first time I'd ever heard anybody. Talk about their body and defying the normative standards as a political action and I had never. It never considered it up until that point. And I still don't think I was fully ready to let in that idea, but I certainly began to mullet Dover. It was a it was a new limbs to try on. And I think it took some years for to kind of fully bloom, but definitely I would definitely she and that community and the community a large started planting the seeds of mine early ideas with body acceptance. Yeah, it's interesting how long it can take sometimes because I had that experience too like. I was an editor of journalist is my first career before I went back to school to be a Dietitian and now I do both. But when I was working as a journalist in school to become a Dietitian, I, had a friend of mine who worked at an online magazine was assigned at this package on childhood obesity and he was like I can't do this. I'm a health at every size. Advocate like it would kill me to deal with this package on childhood obesity, but my boss really wants to do it, so can you edit? Edit it for me. Can you be a guest editor like deal with his package and I was like cool Shirley. I'm going to school for Nutrition Childhood. Obesity is right up my alley and you know, but he ended up still working on the package, writing stories for it, and like through conversations with him about health at every size, and like the war on childhood obesity, and why that might be unfounded I. Did start to open up to like Oh this. There's this other thing. There's this other paradigm that is health at every size and. Maybe, can help explain some of the stigma that these kids are facing is causing them so many more health problems than their size right, but it didn't quite register until like five years later or something when I started working eating disorders as a Dietitian and then I was like Oh. That's hang. Damn socking him out. The pieces are waiting to fall in place. Right, yeah! Oh you've got move this one thing when you move their position, Anki or something else will happen and all of a sudden it all. Kind of like Tetris, game or something. Up Blacks Yeah. Absolutely. That's cool, so yeah, what happened then when you when you started to like, explore those ideas or when the seed was planted. An think that I just got I've always been a person who's questioned things and always been kind of live and let live sort of philosophy from very young, and so I think that I started to just question. Why people aren't just living their bodies right like like, why do I? Why are we? So? Why do we care so much about what's happening with other people's bodies and a think the just also became clear that like there was this way that the world expected us to be in our bodies. That was keeping people from just being happy. Just celebrating themselves as I started sort of like noticing these. Narratives of shame and noticing the judgements that we were living with and. Just as kind of slow brew awakening that was happening for me about one just making piece of by body, but but larger than Matt Lake starting to question the container under which we been viewing. Journal. Though I didn't know that those sort of disease or my work with the body is not an apology. That definitely was sort of the. Early sprouting where these ideas of what is it? It keeps US disconnected from ourselves disconnected from other people, and what keeps us from affirming ourselves and burning to like our bodies, and all of those questions were floating around, and then again in that that's. Mental Tetris it happens I. had this Selfie in my phone of myself in his Black Corsair getting ready for an event at I loved the photo I felt really sexy in powerful in my body, and at the same time was hyper, conscious of this counter narrative that was very loud inside of my ear, telling me do not share that photo like you're too fad your to black or to. The DOT and since that conflict to. Conflict. It's tough was creating something. Because I, it just was not allying. But there's part of me loves this photos of what is this voice telling me not to? And I decided to share the photo after several months of being matt sort of tug of war, inside of myself, decided to show the photo and invited other people share photos. Were they felt powerful and in their bodies, and then the next day like twenty folks tag me in photos of themselves, and it's just started feeling very clear to me that like. Oh we think we are not allowed to celebrate our bodies. However, they look you know. Those twenty photos were all different sorts of people in all different sorts of bodies in a clearer to me that maybe we just needed a space where we were allowed to. Not like tolerate our bodies, but like actually love them and speak nicely about the mcpeek nicely one another about the as celebrate them exactly as they are, and a had. This poem called the body's not apology for about eight to ten months that I had been sharing in the world and I was like Oh. Maybe I should just make facebook page where we can do that thing, celebrate our bodies and disconnect from this sort of. Shame that keeps us or celebrating our bodies and. That's how the page the body is. Not An apology came about, and it sounds like it really struck a chord with people, because everybody has these feelings of like being ashamed about something to do with their bodies and the voice that says don't share that you're not good enough. There's something wrong with you. Of like open up a space for that to give people a place to share and celebrate their bodies, and that was also wasn't that back in like two thousand eleven I think I read select. Kind of before, certainly before this wave of the body, positive movement was really happening before body positivity went so mainstream. Definitely and I think there was this notion very early on. For me, one of the things that just got cleared. Everybody has a by. If nothing else we we all have this thing in common and I don't know anybody who is one hundred percent happy with it. So, what is that about? And I just started noticing the connection between the messages that we give folks about Wade and the messages that we give folks about race and the messages that we give disability. There's a narrative just seems to be sort of cutting through all this. The no matter what body you're in, it's not a good enough body, and that seems absurd to me since we all have to have a body. You literally would not be here. You can't. You can't do this particular Ryan without one. And so there was this kind of stress very matter of fact technique. By that time we were having really fractured relationships of our bodies that it wasn't. It wasn't about one particular way our bodies right. It was about a multitude of ways that our bodies were in my experience of just posting at Selfie and then having people the next day. Wake up and post theirself he's. made it evident that part of tackling whatever those sort of. Crappy narratives about bodies. was about community housing. Go like I did something bad. Brave and celebratory and bat permission to other people to be brave and celebratory. And so what if we create a community where we can be brave and celebratory about our bodies. and. I'm I was I still remained Florida by how obviously necessary that was quickly. Started to grow right, yeah, it really caught on because people needed that space yeah. And it sounds like it's it sounds like you know. The Ali ideas about race and disability and size like that's all you know very informed by intersection analogy. Right like, did you? Did you have a sense of like intersectional feminism or that sort of thinking before you? You stumbled into that, or did you just kind of feel your way into it intuitively I. Definitely Think I, felt my way into it into a didn't have the language of intersection, analogy and certainly. I didn't know that I was using language of feminism I am by major in College, was those theology with an emphasis on race class gender, so those ideas were already there the language of our. Social world changes so The time. That eleven common I finished college in two thousand. There was a whole different lexicon. But the idea is that we are. Living at the cross roads of multiple identities like the idea that that I am. Black, and a woman and Queer and neuro divergent the I. Didn't you know like I? Don't think I had to go to school to know. Those things can be just our which drew. Me and my body right, and so it was a way in which that language was always present, because that was always present in my life, I grew up living at the intersections of multiple identities and grew up around people living at the intersection of multiple identities, so always made very clear since to me that there were a multitude of issues to be talking about and then later on the language intersex analogy. Intersectional. Feminism showed up and I was like. Oh, I guess that's what we're calling this thing that I. Just feels berry intrinsic. That's called. That's really interesting, so did you with those other identities sort of intersecting identities? You grew up with. Do you feel like you had to make peace with each of those at a certain point? was there ever shame around them or feelings of not not enough nece, or was that more located in your body size? Oh, no, definitely think all the multitudes of identities. had a good healthy dose of stain and offer that probably a been most impacted at least as it relates to shame with related to my racial identity, ambitious related to to being black in. America and the some internalize racism that existed there in the that manifest. In community dynamics. Like I got teased a lot as a kid for in dark skin, and I got teased a lot of bragging short hair and I got. into a I can see all of those incidents manifestations of white supremacist notions of beauty, but as a kid I did know that I just thought I was like the volume black role who wanted to do that? In which part of what fueled the notions of my body? Is Currency Right again? It was like you have all these other things that no is ever going to find beautiful, so you'd better figure out how you can capitalize on this in Eugene, which was a body, it can be sexualize ramp. And so those areas of identity always had stigma attached to them and healing those back in some ways I would offer that. Weight has been one of the easier ones I mean. I say that relatively. Own the easier ones to sort of navigate. Yeah, that's interesting. So. How did you start to unpack appeal back? On sort of confront or recognize the internalized racism or It happened. You know, encompass felt very accidental. Activists didn't set out to do any of these things. But I didn't mean to do any of doing. Same here. Exactly what? But like I said I was in a poetry community, and I think a lot of my enquiries game to happen in my writing I would start to be asking myself about these ideas through the vehicle of poetry, and in two thousand and. Nine or two thousand ten, I, two, thousand, nine, or two, thousand and ten. There was this big sort of. BROUHAHA! That happened in the poetry community. Someone was writing a recap of a national poetry event and I've found there recap to be really racially biased. Now I don't have any recollection feeding really. Deeply about race before then but. Something about that. Recession and something about the way that the person wrote the review. Chest really. Put a spotlight on. Not only, but I felt was like racial bias in what they writing, but it also made it very clear to me all of the ways that I had judged things through my own limbs of internalized racism, and so I wrote up an essay in response to to this person's essay. And all of sudden found myself just deeply embroiled in conversations about racial equity add by supremacy an empty blackness. and. I didn't. I surely didn't set out to be the person having those conversations, but those conversations. were striking a chord in me and as they did. They just sort of translated into the way that I. Seeing the world moving through the world, and that I started questioning all of my own ideas about things. So I find that just started. The thread for me is in that something will happen. The capitalizes, an idea or cadillacs is is something that's been stirring inside of me Anyway Urban Norman. And then it becomes. The next major piece of something so I think all of these things were building blocks leading up to the creation of the bodies, binding apology, but of course I see them at the time Brian I didn't know that I was having these separate conversations in inquiries about all of these different issues about body, because I supposed to go on to create an intersectional digital media. I know that. Right but all of those things where being foundation. Yeah that makes so much sense and and I've read you know you've written barely beautifully about how like discrimination and injustice. Plays into our directly the result of our difficulty. Bodies Right like the making peace with with the body is inability to make peace with the body. Right exactly. Yes, thank you. But? Yeah, so you know, speak a little bit about that like how you started to connect the concept of body acceptance and the body with all these social justice issues. So I didn't when I first started the buddies, not apology as the face of page. Those overlaps were not. Conscious to me yet, they were there again in that sort of tetris right, they were there. They read Bannon all falling into place. And what I think was happening was that I was doing all of these things separately right like I was doing racial justice work over here and. Doing stuff around mental illness over here had been doing stuff around HIV over there and I've been doing stuff around reproductive rights and justice abortion over there. Doing the disability over there in the. Face of age was about like the body, and I was also at that time. Sir, coming into my own identity, is queer that was happening and as I was. You know posting things sharing things that were about the body in about like how we love our bodies our. Practice this idea of at the time I? Don't think I was using the I had not yet developed language or was calling it radicals of love. I think I was I was talking about living unapologetically and later that language DOT clearer, but. A started to see that. It wasn't jest our own experiences, our own personal antidotes that were informing how we saw our bodies, or how we saw other people's bodies, there was an entire larger framework right so I was like what if we are in this battle? At the time one of the things that big was a position, eight and leasing people's right to get married and I was like that's. Who I marry is about. The way the desire and love happens in my body. That's about my body, and it's about how my body relates to other people's bodies, whether or not people eat, that's. Normal quote, unquote or not normal and police, violence and the. Targeting of black bodies by the police is about it's about blackness, which is about bodies. Like the erasure of Disabled six in just our. World in general is bow making some bodies invisible, because they make us uncomfortable, and so it just started to be very clear to me that the issues of injustice and inequity that we were seeing in the world or very directly related to how we felt about people's bodies, and think later on would also got clear that even when it isn't necessarily directly related to how you feel about people's bodies. Impact and outcomes of whatever those beliefs in thinkings are have been on the body, so have to deal with the site of impact, which is the body, and so that just all kind of. Became clearer as as I endeavored into the work. And I started seeing the connection between all of these different things that I thought I was doing if felt very different, except that I was like Nope, there actually all about the body. They're all. We feel about the body. They're all about whose bodies decided normal is bodies. Curved as the depot body close is imagine a body. It's all about whether or not bodies are in alignment with those rules prescribed. It's the body. Right that is such a beautiful explanation of why body positivity or body, acceptance or health at every size or whatever you're going to call it, you know is a social justice issue, and why? We can't divorce spotty size from other forms. Other identities and other ways in which people are oppressed or marginalized and it's. It's so important. I think at this point in history especially with what's going on our government right now to like recognize that. This is the body positive or body. Acceptance Movement can't. Just stay silent about other issues right? It's like it's about lifting up people of size, but also people of Color People Queer folks and Trans folks in like people with disabilities, and all of that like it's. It's not body, positivity or body acceptance if we're not making room for all bodies. Exactly like I'm just like if I can't be positive and my blackness and I can't be positive quickness and I can't be posited in my neuro divergence and I can't be if they're these other places were not allowed to be positive, but doesn't matter I. Totally Okay being. That's. All and so. I think it's important for us. Recognize that as long by if any of those systems of injustice and actually we will ever achieve collect deliberation member will never actually totally be free to live in our bodies as we see it as long as there are ways in which somebody's are policed and other bodies are not. Right, that's well said. If your body is considered to not measure up in some way, even if you've got it now, it's all okay over here on the body sized front, but you're still being told you're not good enough and all these other ways. That's GONNA show up in your relationship with your body and your with yourself. And it's it's not all. Rosy just because you have your relationship with your size and your your body shape. Can. It worked out? Not at all because again, this idea that none of us are living a single issue. Live railway. We live at the intersections of these identities. Just if you get one fixed of scrape, who wants to be playing oppression walkable? To write. US to create a world that works for everybody so that everybody has the option to pursue air. Hi, sells their most powerful existence. Absolutely yeah I'm curious to know your kind of feelings about the current positive movement as as mainstream as it is now a sort of one color, one gender, one age group you know like. How can we improve that or work with that? I think it's really important to recognize the ways in which movements become a commodity or the larger economic structure that we live under, and so being able to see how capitalism uses ops movements to further his own agenda, and so part of the reason why positivity I think is gone, so mainstream is because it's a way to. to sell it to us. It's like Oh we back. And I think as soon as we recognize. The thing we made is now being sold to us. A GREAT! It's a great place to be like a mini. Something is off here. Things that I wanNA talk about and I work shop someone whenever I'm in space speaking. Is that like a great indicator of whether or not the work that we're doing is the work of liberation. is to look around and see WHO's not in the room and we're looking around the positively movement, and it is white. SIS, able bodied. HOURGLASS shaped size. White women. We're doing the work of freedom like we're not. That is a movement that is operating in Ain Paradigm. That has already which means that it's not sustainable in that we've done that paradigm, and it hasn't gotten as free saving. No, it doesn't work. So were there and we find ourselves? Replicating not saying paradigm is a great indicator that we are in a space that he's actually going to be productive towards the long term goal of equality of the regime, and it's part of the reason why we moved to this language of radical self love, because the notion of radical demands that we deal with the intersections of our social political and economic lives in relationship to our bodies, and so if we are not like in the body, positivity movement isn't changing the way in which. All bodies get to live unencumbered and free. Is only replicating system that already exists, it is not radical and radical requires drastic change. It requires a change that shifts the systems, our society in our world, and it implies that inherently exists that it is already is already there and in us, as though there is an opportunity for us for folks who are in the body positive movement to continue. To ask who isn't here? And why aren't they here? To ask the best thing that I did for my own self This work was to keep pressing the Lids the to keep pressing those sort of outer boundaries of body positivity. Is it okay for me to be positive about my body? Panels. Is it okay to be positive about my body? If I'm quadriplegic from an accident? Is it okay for me to be positive about my body as an undocumented arsim? Is that like keep asking? How far does my positively? That is that is our personal debts are personal bias. That's where we get to see. Oh, actually, here's where my own prejudice lives right and then we get. Back for ourselves and I I think that we don't collectively ask particularly the the movement of body positivity to do that that hard pressing inquiry often enough. Yeah absolutely because I think that's how you get. People who are like. Oh, well body positivity is great for people who are in up to this weight size and this this range, but you know above that it's just unhealthy, and there's no. Health every size, but not for all sizes only for sizes up to, and it's kind of like what you were saying about growing up this idea of like. You can't get too big. You have there's outer limit to like what is acceptable or something and a Yankee. That's you know no matter what the limit is right because like you had this this limit of like you can't get too big, but acceptance of were big people, and so up to a point like we're just going to be big, but not past this point you know and. And for people and other families or communities, it's like Oh while this is the point, there's always a point. It's a different different point for each person, but there is. Are there these boundaries on what is supposed to be acceptable and I mean I guess I don't WanNa say batteries because I like the word boundaries. I feel like boundaries are so important. I'm. Super Boundaries in terms of keeping yourself safe but like. Certain limitations. Feeling on a ceiling on love. Really what it is right and. Essentially love shouldn't have a ceiling. Loved should be Lizard Expansive, and all COMP-, assaying, and so my love has a ceiling. Fan I own love and a ceiling on my ability to love other people's bodies. What is that about and who put that ceiling? such. Yeah Right. Yeah. I think that we all kind of have those feelings for ourselves that we hold onto in different ways and. Doing the work of asking yourself like why am I not expanding pass? This point is so helpful, so you're talking about feeling unapologetic in your body and feeling good in your body and love for your body and I'm curious. This is a question starting to ask people more and more on podcast, because what comes up sometimes in my work with clients who are working on body acceptance, and you know I'm a intuitive eating coach, so it's Martin. The body image work part of it, but it's also helping people connect back with their bodies cues about eating, but something that I hear a lot is like while you know, have gained weight, and now I'm uncomfortable in my body like now I physically feel less comfortable and sort of ill at ease in this body and this larger body, and as a small person myself having never experienced living in a larger body. I'm Kinda like I don't. Don't think it's my story to tell here. My my thing to explain like what's going on for this person and I would never want to like take away. Someone's lived experience of what it's like to be in their body, because I don't know I don't know what it's like to be. Anyone else's body, but mine, but there is a sense in which I feel like the idea of being uncomfortable in your body at a larger size. There's a lot of weight stigma and fat phobia wrapped up in that right, and so I'm curious to hear like what your your response would be to someone who says I thought I could accept my body, but now it's bigger and I've just uncomfortable. Volunteers a lot of work around unpacking language like does what what does uncomfortable meet because if they were, it doesn't have material reality. And so like what does that mean materially? means that in my closer tight, so is that because you're willing to go up? asides in the close aware right like in if so, let's talk about what that is. Does that mean that things are harder to do? And if so, what are those things that are hardly do? Is that a function of gain or is that a function of? Wellness in some other way that can be assessed outside of weight and asking people like one of the examples. It's just like I can't walk up snow. Being tired great so if you were to build up your cardiovascular system. In central way that totally walk steps without being tired, and you were not to lose one single. How would you be comfortable in your body and getting people to like grapple with that? Because often I totally agree that a lot of times uncomfortable in my buyer uncomfortable with this new size and all the conditioning that I have received that needs to be. Now. And so divorced ing? Wellness from weights. And divorcing this sort of ways, in which we have married weight and size to notions of comfort and ease and health, and all these other things, really asking people to pull those things apart and deal with the material reality of where things that I do want to be able to do or cannot do now. What are ways that I moved through the world are different, and are there ways to navigate those things that are not about weight because at the end of the day. Usually, it isn't about the weight. There are markers indicators of wellness and Gillian Stamina. All of these things that are absolutely independent wait. We have them tied together that? Are. Still that all of those things are function a weight gain. That the only way that they can be navigated by weight loss, and so asking people to separate those Dan's but great I want you to be able to walk slightest bill good to. Question is if you were to develop that ability that stamina and never lose a pound. Would that be fine? Yeah, and then when people get no with, be hard, because or will I? Don't know because then. We know that we're starting to get. Is Much more about the. Weight than it is about an actual. Material. Discomfort Yeah. That's really well said and I think it's so true that people can have different levels of stamina that have nothing to do with their size, but just like. How often do you do this thing right like often? Are you walking up a flight of stairs? He now maybe this is. You're traveling to a place. That has a subway with a bunch of stairs. You're not used to it upstairs. Nita must time or Stuff like that, so I can. Getting into the swing of things because the reality is to people of all sizes, you know people in smaller bodies get winded going upstairs sometimes if they're not used to it or. Read or if it's a hot day and they have not water, whatever like there's lots of factors even on an individual level day to day. That can affect your how you're feeling in your body. so yeah and I think the thing about close feeling tight so interesting too because. Iowa's sale close job to fit you. It's not your job A. It's not. It doesn't matter what size it says you know and it saying just please closed field constricting. That's not a fault with your body. That's a fault with the clothes. That we do often in the realm of weight as they, we blame our bodies for the ways in which we stigma and bias baked into the entirety of our society. Right so they us. I it was someone on a on a thread on the body is not an apology on facebook. The other day, saying relied too fat to do dot dot dot dot, and I was thinking I offer that it's unlikely that your to fact to dot dot dot. Dot Dot dot did not consider your body when he created whatever it was created. A. Of A. Wage my bias erasure of the manufacturer, and not a failure of you're. Absolutely yeah, the world is not designed with body diversity in mind, not at all designed for a very narrow subset of the population. Exactly and our bodies aren't wrong for that right exactly. Yeah, yeah, no I think that's so important to keep in mind and it's also hard I. Mean I definitely have worked with people who are like you know? I've always been fat, but I've been able to fit in airplane seats or whatever, and then now I'm crossing a threshold. There's the ceiling again where now? Can be able to, and it's like. I feel so much empathy for people in that situation to you, because it's really important and helpful to acknowledge like the world is not built for you and it sucks, but it's quite another to like have to experience that firsthand especially, if you're. Not used to that sort of jumping into. It can feel like a very scary thing to jump into. Yeah, definitely, the awakening sort of call it like the process of having the blinds open, and it doesn't realize discovered that it doesn't matter which sort of area of oppression or bias your awakening to. Awakening to it is an exceptionally painful eight. It's awakening to the fact. That the world has decided that something about you is not okay. And as a very jarring and painful and isolating experience, but I think it's so important for us to keep coming back to the that it's not about you as an individual that is about a largest system that we've all been conditioned to believe in to varying degrees, and the work of dismantling that system is the work of a weakening to it right? Yeah, awakening is a huge part of it because. Most of us spent a lot of our lives, not awake to it, and so then exactly starting to see it as a big step, and then starting to really live it is is another think. Yes, absolutely I think it's also a dance. It's like you can sort of be awake to these issues and understand that it's a systemic thing. It's not something about you personally failing, but then there's those moments in life that just push your buttons that just take you back to that place of Oh my God. Maybe it's my fault. People say like. The day can go years without dieting or thinking about diets, and then something that happens, and it's like Oh. Maybe I should try this thing. Back on this diet. You know like we talk about it? The body is not an apology. like the work is the worker Article Self. Love is not a destination based work. It's a journey, a lifelong journey work, and it's a lifelong journey base for. Were never living in a world doesn't still have those biases in it and so. We're constantly countering a message in given to us every single day and I mean it's exhausting. In some days we'll still more fortified to fight those messages than others in tell people originally asset remnant tire organization focused on radical self. Love is my whole life and job, and there are days I wait my body, and that too is part of the journey. Totally, that's such an important point like none of us are. Finished works of art in this movement like. It's a progressive thing. It's not a not a destination. Because I feel the same I definitely have days when I wake up and don't love my body or try on and outfit, and I'm like Oh God no home. It's like that's. That's the reality of living in this world, and then the question is what do you do with that? Can you accept it and move on and just sort of be like okay? I'm having a bad day or a tough time with my body right now, but I'm just gonNA. I'm still gonNA feed it Ryan. I'm still gonNA give it what it needs I'm still gonNA. Move it or not move it as my body tells me wants like I'm not going to punish it for this feeling bobbing about it, which doesn't really come from it in the first place de. Conditioning about it back. I was GONNA say that. That's the distinction that for me. That helps me navigate is remembering. What I call the distinction between the inside boys on the outside boys, the voice of my radical self love boys. It's the voice that actually knows by intrinsic. Wealth and value in the world in the body that I have right now. And then there's the outside voice which is the voice of his by discrimination and body shaming on terrorism and. Polity in that voice is the voice that's talking loud in Sunday's. That voice, really loud, and then some day unable to turn it down, but knowing that it isn't my voice, knowing that actually aimed at his blaring in ears is an external voice. It has been given to me. Helps me, navigate on those days and and I talked about like. If you have a toddler, learn and you were good parents. You came home and your toddler. Alert on the walls or bottle of flour. Coated in flour with was that the toddler dand it. Has You frustrated as all get out that particular day you would still feed the toddler. Bill love the toddler. You would still care for the toddler and clean it clean the toddler up. And so what if we treated our relationships with our bodies lake toddler that we're learning. We are growing up into is a relationship that is outside of external voice. What if were patient and kind and loving and gentle with ourselves as we would be with a toddler, we were frustrated. I love that. That's such a good metaphor. Because it really is, we can have that kind of frustration with our bodies in the throes of body negatively and yet they're still offense in which we have to care for them and be there for them and. Show them love and compassion. In order to move forward with our lives. In order to live again the. Particular ride with about it. Makes sense that makes sense to try to make these totally really. Yeah, there's no way anyone's GonNa. Get to be like a disembodied soul floating in a jar somewhere like. That doesn't exist. Via, so you got a care for the body. You have yeah. Yeah. Well, so lovely talking with you and tell us where people can find out more about the bodies on an apology. Read some of your work. Absolutely so the body is not apology runs the daily digital magazine with content from writers, and all kinds of bodies all over the world, and you can read our content on a regular basis at www dot. The body is about an apology dot com. You can also follow us on all the social media platforms at the body is not an apology, and you can find out more about my individual word at Sanga Dash. Rene Dot Com or he also follow me on facebook on your name Taylor or on twitter at urinate. Awesome and we'll put links. All those in the show notes so people can find you. Right! Yeah, thank you so much Sonya pleasure talking with you, it was. Pleasure talking to you Kristie thanks for having me on absolutely. So. That is our show. Thanks again so much to Sonya Renee Taylor for that great conversation we had years ago and for all of her amazing work, and thanks to you for listening. We'll be back next week with a new episode, and meanwhile to get full show notes from this episode. Including all the resources, we discussed those great anti-racism resources. I was mentioning plus a full transcript. Just go to Kristie Harrison. Dot Com slash to forty two. That's Chrissy Harrison dot com slash two four two, and to get the transcript scroll down to the bottom of the page and enter your email address. A big thanks to our editor and sound engineer Mike Lalonde, our community and content Associate Vinci Trae at our administrative assistant Julianne Motassedeq for helping me out with all the moving parts that go into producing the show every week. Our album art was photographed by abby. More photography and design by Melissa, allom or theme song was written and performed by Caroline Penny Packer rigs I'm your host and producer Christie Harrison. Thanks again for listening and until next time stay psyched for justice and revolution.