I'm a plus size, artistic, spoonie & feminist.
I'm a plus size, artistic, spoonie & feminist.
I’m always on the lookout for films with positive messages for my children. Films that promote inner confidence and treating others well. Films that inspire and raise up.
Red Shoes and the 7 Dwarfs is not one of those.
The studio behind this film have faced a backlash over the media they have chosen to release to promote it. Unsurprisingly given that the billboard describes Snow White as “no longer beautiful” and then demonstrates this apparent lack of beauty by making her shorter and fatter. Because of course only tall thin women can be beautiful right?
This Chloe Moretz cartoon also seems, uh, questionable pic.twitter.com/93ieRc9JnQ
— Kyle Buchanan (@kylebuchanan) May 25, 2017
Their response was to reassure by saying, “Our film, a family comedy, carries a message designed to challenge social prejudices related to standards of physical beauty in society by emphasizing the importance of inner beauty. We appreciate and are grateful for the constructive criticism of those who brought this to our attention.”
Oh right, well that puts a totally different spin on it right? Especially as they go on to say, “We sincerely regret any embarrassment or dissatisfaction this mistaken advertising has caused to any of the individual artists or companies involved with the production or future distribution of our film, none of whom had any involvement with creating or approving the now discontinued advertising campaign”.
So is it just an advertising agency who misjudged their brief?
Maybe. But then, maybe not. The blurb on the website starts out echoing the statement about societal pressures to fit a narrow definition of beauty.
“A normal girl born into extraordinary circumstances, she’s a Princess who doesn’t fit into the celebrity world of Princesses – or their dress size. She wants to stay true to herself but Fairy Tale Island is all about looks.”
No argument there, we need to show children – and adults – that there is more to life than beauty standards and draw attention to how reliant society is on them.
But then I feel it falls down, “And to let the beauty within – the beauty that Prince Merlin falls in love with – shine brighter than anyone else in the land.” Here we have the classic Princess story, she finds her worth because a man falls in love with her. This is not a message I want my daughter to take on board. I also don’t want her to “shine brighter than anyone else”, as the saying goes, “Blowing Out Someone Else’s Candle Won’t Make Yours Shine Brighter.“
This doesn’t inspire me with much hope, as far as I can tell it’s reinforcing the very messages it’s hoping to challenge.
And then there’s the trailer.
Oh the trailer.
It opens with two of the dwarf/princes hiding under a table in the Princess’s room, watching while she slowly and seductively pulls down the zipper on the back of her dress.
Just to remind you, this is apparently a family film. And as an aside I do not know any woman who – whilst in the privacy of her own home – undoes a zip like that.
So not only do we have the equation of beauty with slimness, the validation of beauty being dependant on men’s approval, and the idea that women must compete. We also have women being watched undress without their consent as entertainment.
I’m not sure they can blame an advertising company for this one.
In case you are wondering why the Princes are even hiding in her room, it’s because they are competing with other princes to win a kiss from “the most beautiful princess in the world”.
She is reduced to a trophy to be won.
Oh and those Princes? The handsomest princes in the whole world? Seems they are quite happy to do away with a narrow definition of handsome when it comes to the male characters. When they say Fairyland is all about looks, they mean for women.
I won’t be taking my children to this, they deserve better.
We love a bit of stationery here at She Might Be – you can definitely never have too many journals and notebooks – so we’re always on the look out for fab new pieces to add to our ever growing collections.
We were all very disappointed to read about the body shaming stationery brought out by Fox & Moon. There’s definitely no need for that, so we wanted to turn their negativity into something positive and celebrate some of the artists and brands putting out beautiful and uplifting stationery.
Let’s start with this unapologetic floral notebook by Riot Cakes – and definitely check out her other artwork, I’m particularly liking the Riots Not Diets sloth.
How could you not fall in love with this gorgeous plus size Yoga babe by Charlotte Thompson? Especially with her “Dream Big” message. You can also get colouring pages of these beautiful illustrations.
Always a firm favourite, this inspiring illustration by Joanna Thangiah promotes Loving Yourself, even when it’s hard to do.
I love all of Carol Rosetti’s wonderful character designs, and Marina is a definite favourite, with a wonderful message.
I love the simplicity of this illustration by Marie Boiseau, and would definitely be tempted to buy the matching stickers.
How cute is this character design by Abbi Laura? She is definitely Fat ‘n’ Fab!
There’s a variety of adorable chubby babes on these journals be Hana Chiel, so you’re sure to find one that appeals to you
Or if you like your stationery with more of an edge you cannot go wrong with this journal by Hayley Lyn.
I had to end this with a cheeky bit of self promotion, because who doesn’t love chubby, body positive cats?
I hope we’ve given you some great inspiration for your next stationary fix, do let us know which your favourites are and whether you’ve seen any other great designs we might have missed!
How healthy are you?
Is your diet always 100% perfect? Do you avoid alcohol? Get the recommended amount of sleep? Limit screen time? Avoid areas with pollution? Have you checked that you haven’t inherited anything that might cause health issues? Do you ever do anything with an associated risk, eg. get in a car?
What if I told you that – when you gave what I decided waa the incorrect answer to any of these – you were worth less? Your value as a person was decreased. You are less deserving of respect, dignity and care.
You wouldn’t accept that would you?
And yet this is what fat people are expected to accept whenever the, “what about your health?” argument rears it’s ugly head.
Fat people, unsurprisingly for those who realise that we are actually full people, span the whole spectrum of health issues. Much like non-fat people. Some of us have inherited disabilities that impact on our health, some have suffered injuries, some have completely random and unconnected illnesses, some have your common illnesses that affect huge swathes of the population, some are mostly healthy with some minor niggles, some are pretty damn healthy (lucky them!)
Some of them will have disabilities or illnesses that are related to their size.
Some will be fat because of their disability or illness.
Many will be a mix of a variety of the above.
But we all have one thing in common. We matter.
Someone with a terminal illness does not matter more than someone with a degenerative disability. Someone with a broken leg doesn’t matter more than someone with a bit of a cold.
Each and every person deserves respect, equal rights, equal opportunities and equal access. No matter their level of health.
Imagine if you had picked up a bug, and were feeling under the weather. If all your interactions while you were ill revolved around telling you that other people knew better than you, that others deserved more than you, that you just weren’t going to be treated as a full person until you got well again. You’d know this wasn’t right. You know that illness doesn’t change your worth as a person.
Concern trolling fat people is a way of saying that – firstly the observer appears to think they can diagnose ill health just by looking (if they can could they please volunteer their skills to the NHS, thanks), but also that their assumed level of health in some way changes how others think they should interact with them. And I think we can safely assume, going by experience, that this change is not a positive one.
So next time you want to ask a fat person about their health, or respond to fat shaming posts by brands with, “but fat people’s health”, maybe stop and think about why you are ranking people by their health anyway, and where you’d sit on that scale.
Even if you were to start asking for someone’s medical files before interacting with them, remember that a better world is one in which we treat others with respect and consideration.