Document Type

Honors Project On-Campus Access Only


This paper considers the material and semiotic realities in the lives of those whose bodies deviate from the female norms of thinness and symmetricality. I argue that the discursive formations of both obesity and breast cancer are a biopolitical practice, producing particular bodies as excessive, ill, or deficient in juxtaposition to normative notions of the moral citizen/consumer. For example, both the Body Mass Index and the Gail Model for breast cancer risk assessment pull women into the realm of risk and contamination, in need of monitoring and intervention. This entanglement of therapy and surveillance forecloses possibilities to live other lives. However, spaces of resistance open for and are opened by those struggling for legible ways of living with breast cancer and fat—in the radical potential of outed fat and bared breast and scalp, and in feminist successor science projects—so that a more unbounded politics of living well through difference may be found.



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