When leisure author Sesali Bowen walks right into a room, she owns it. Though she thinks earlier than she speaks, she’s not afraid to let you realize what’s on her thoughts — after which put all of that into phrases. When Bowen was youthful, she spent her free time doing one among two issues: journaling, or daydreaming about journaling. After she realized her knack of writing might, basically, write her future, she centered on her innate pursuits that, too, got here from her coronary heart: gender research, ladies’s well being, race, and extra. Following stints at Planned Parenthood and Oxygen, her efforts landed her at Refinery29, the place she presently writes about leisure and popular culture by means of what she calls her ‘entice feminist’ lens.
What is ‘entice feminism,’ you ask? Well, as Bowen explains to Refinery29’s co-founder and world editor-in-chief Christene Barberich on this week’s UnStyled podcast, it is her distinctive feminist sensibility that features what she calls a “messy feminism,” a mindset that goes past hip hop feminism, a concept began by Joan Morgan. “It’s gritty, hood culture that specifically came from listening to trap music. Hip-hop and trap music is always critiqued for being anti-feminist,” she explains. “But there is agency for women there; you just know how to look for it.” And she’s proper.
A self-proclaimed “hood girl,” Bowen hails from Chicago, Illinois, which lent her an upbringing that she makes use of at the side of her masters diploma to have a look at points throughout the hip hop and feminist realms another way. Take going to the strip membership to make it rain: “I think that’s a classic, cliché critique of something like that; that this person only sees women as sexual objects, that they get to go and see and view in a sexual way and throw money at, and you know — that’s that. But what does that say about women who choose to partake in that particular realm of sex work?” Amen.
If we begin to focus an excessive amount of on physique positivity, we lose sight of the accountability that folks have to not deal with fats folks like shit.
Believe us once we say Bowen is Refinery29’s knowledgeable on all issues lit. Get to know her, and her ideas on the aforementioned matters — together with, however not restricted to, physique picture, gender and sexuality, and a lot extra — on this week’s episode of UnStyled.
You determine as queer. Tell us about what it was like accepting that label for your self.
Sesali Bowen: “You know, the funny thing is: I’ve always been queer. Even when I was straight I was queer. Because I think that sex with fat women has always been contextualized as so outwardly other. I think the fact that I even had a sex life was so mind-blowing to some people. When they would find out it was almost as if I had outed myself, as if it was outside of the realm of acceptable, heterosexual sexuality. That someone would be a attracted to a fat person, that fat people have desires — I always felt very not straight.”
What are a few of your rules on model? What is the function that non-public model performs in your life? SB: “I have a bittersweet relationship with style. I’m a fat girl. That is a self-identifier that I use. And I think that a lot of my style gets defined for me because I’m a person who has to wear plus-size clothes. So, I think that the places that I’m able to go to get clothes, the places that I’m able to look to for inspiration — as to the way certain things might look on my body — they’re all very limited in that way.”
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