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Has the body positivity movement accomplished anything?
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Body positivity does not address the root causes of insecurity about our bodies

Body positivity does not challenge the importance placed on appearance as a signifier of a person’s value. Whilst inclusivity is important, we should try to move beyond defining people by their appearance.

The Argument

Body positivity does not question why people have come to have unhappy relationships with their bodies, and places the burden of loving bodies on the individual. The emphasis in the body positivity movement in loving oneself makes the issue one of internal struggle, but this overlooks the importance of historical social and cultural trends that seek to control and define the way we - and women in particular - look.[1] Visibility in the media is not enough on its own to help everyone embrace their body. Without challenging the wider cultural norms that judge people on appearance alone, the underlying reasons why people are unhappy with their physical appearance will persist. It is important to move on from appearances as a major source of self-worth or dissatisfaction and find value in other aspects of a person’s identity. [2]

Counter arguments

The body positivity movement is part of a wider cultural backlash against objectification. It is an important first step in this wider transformation of society - it has done a great deal for challenging harmful norms and empowering marginalised groups. There is of course more work to be done, but this does not take anything away from the movement thus far.



Rejecting the premises


This page was last edited on Friday, 20 Nov 2020 at 17:51 UTC

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