Call for Submissions: Fat Sex

Essays are sought for an edited collection on the topic of sex and the fat body. The editors are looking for proposals which approach this theme from a range of disciplinary perspectives, and which take an original, critical, and body-positive approach to questions of fat and sexuality. Dr Samantha Murray will be contributing the Foreword to the collection. She is a lecturer in Cultural Studies at Macquarie University, and has published works such as ‘The Fat Female Body’ (2008), multiple journal articles, and special issues on fat studies.

Fat Sex aims to address a major blind spot in the emerging area of fat studies. To date, fat studies has sought to challenge the prevailing notions of ‘the obesity epidemic’ and dieting culture but, with the exception of one or two important essays (Murray 2004, Gailey 2012), the discipline has largely ignored the complex issues surrounding fat sex and sexualities. Whilst fat activists continue to do excellent work in this area, producing zines, blogs, and artworks, academic scholarship has as yet done little to confront and interrogate this highly visible area of contemporary body politics. This collection will seek to extend the important contribution of the activist community, bringing vital debates about fat sex into the academic arena.

The editors seek contributions which will appeal to a diverse audience:
students and researchers in a range of disciplines, from the social sciences to media, cultural, and literary studies; academics and practitioners in a variety of health-related settings; and the queer and fat activist communities. We are interested in academic articles (6,000 -8,000 words), personal reflexive writing (4,000-5,000 words); poetry; cartoons; art work; (black and white only) and other short creative pieces.

Topics might include (but are not limited to):

* The construction of fat sexual bodies
* Representations of fat flesh
* Fat and/as queer
* Gendered approaches to fat bodies
* The politics of fatness and sexuality
* The medicalization of fat sexuality
* Feminisms and fatness
* Fat masculinities
* The fat body in pornography
* Feederism
* BBW/ Fat Admirers
* The relationship between fat activism and research * Popular culture, fat bodies and sexuality

Please send proposals of 250-300 words and a short biography to Helen Hester ( and Caroline Walters ( by 30th September 2012.

Helen Hester is a Senior Lecturer in Media and Cultural Studies at Middlesex University. She has published articles on sexuality studies, transgression, and the abject body, and is the author of Dirty Money:
Pornography and the Erotics of Consumption (Zer0 Books, forthcoming).

Caroline Walters is an Associate Lecturer in Media and Communication Studies at Sheffield Hallam University. She has organised several conferences (Bisexuality and Mental Health in Bradford, UK 2012; Forgotten Bodies in Exeter 2010). She is currently working on her first monograph, which is adapted from her PhD entitled Discourses of Heterosexual Female Masochism and Submission from the 1880s to the Present Day.

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