Posts by Denise Reich

  • In the Blog

    Denise’s Test, Part 2: More Positive Media Depictions of People of Size

    August 24th, 2015     by Denise Reich     Comments

    As I continue to search for positive depictions of people of size on stage and screen, I’ve come up with several more examples. As a reminder, to pass Denise’s Test the character of size must be treated like any other person on the show. They might be villains or heroes and they might be loved or loathed by the audience, but they’re not there in the context of a stereotype or joke. They’re not a) a stock “villainous glutton” or a related trope; b) they’re not the token “funny fat guy” who exists only for comic relief, and c) their existence is neither defined nor dominated by obsession or contentious relationships with food. Part 2 continues to focus on people of size that appear as main or supporting characters. READ MORE

  • In the Blog

    Carless in North America: Ten examples of disadvantage in public transportation

    August 17th, 2015     by Denise Reich     Comments

    A recent Buzzfeed quiz about privilege asked an interesting question: if the reader had to rely on public transportation. It’s an issue that doesn’t seem to be brought up very much, but perhaps it should be. While mass transit is fast and efficient in many parts of the world, if you don’t have your own vehicle you’re at an extreme disadvantage in many parts of North America. The challenges can be substantial, particularly for women, the disabled, and the elderly. READ MORE

  • In the Blog

    Purple Monsters on Parade: Five Things (this) Chronically Ill Person Would Like You to Know

    July 16th, 2015     by Denise Reich     Comments

    Navigating life with a chronic or long-term condition can be challenging. Understanding how to relate to a friend or relative who is chronically ill can similarly be daunting. It’s not always easy to understand what your loved one is experiencing, no matter how well you know them. What would I like my friends and family to know? READ MORE

  • In the Blog

    Denise’s Test: In search of fair media depictions of people of size

    July 13th, 2015     by Denise Reich     Comments

    It’s not particularly common to find fat people depicted in a positive light in films and television shows. They’re far more likely to be cast as unpleasant characters, and in the instances where they’re actually given a lot of screen time, it’s often for comic relief. And of course, they’re frequently depicted eating a lot. Everyone knows about the Bechdel Test for depictions of women in media. I couldn’t find anything similar about fair depictions of people of size, so I developed my own test. READ MORE

  • In the Blog

    The Power of Dancing Man

    June 4th, 2015     by Denise Reich     Comments

    Several months ago Sean O’Brien, a heavyset financier from Liverpool, England, was mocked while he was dancing at a club. To add insult to injury, the trolls snapped two photos of him –one where he was dancing, and a second where he was looking dejectedly at the ground after he’d stopped – and posted them online with derogatory commentary. In everyday circumstances, perhaps that’s where the story would have ended. Here’s where the story gets interesting: this time, it didn’t fly. READ MORE

  • In the Blog

    Farewell, Aunt Flo

    May 29th, 2015     by Denise Reich     Comments

    I first got my period when I was 11 years old. It was a surprise to everyone, including me. I’d always been one of the shortest and smallest girls in my class; I hadn’t reached visible puberty early. Almost overnight, though, it seemed that I’d been visited by the Breast Fairy, and she’d dragged along my period as a little bit of extra pixie dust. READ MORE

  • In the Blog

    Why the Jem Trailer makes me sad

    May 19th, 2015     by Denise Reich     Comments

    When I learned that a film about Jem and the Holograms was in the works, I was apprehensive. I did, however, vow to give the Jem movie a chance. That went out the window the moment I saw the trailer. The new film has seemingly removed every single aspect of what made Jem so special and empowering for young girls, from the bright colours on down. Was the original show perfect? Not at all. It did, however, deserve better than it seems to have received. READ MORE

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