These two words seemed to be joined at the hip. Sometimes they can be meant as a backhanded compliment, but usually they are meant as the insult they appear to be. And the strange thing is that, nine times out of ten, no one says a thing. Why is it that curvy girls are allowed to be proud of their curves while skinny girls aren’t encouraged to take pride in their more slender physique?
The Top 40 charts aren’t exactly helping. Songs like Meghan Trainer’s “All About That Bass” and Nikki Minaj’s “Anaconda” both claim to be about loving yourself no matter what the rest of the world has to say, but both blatantly bash girls with thin body types.
To be fair, Trainer tries to keep her song positive with the repeated line “Every inch of you is perfect from the bottom to the top,” but the fact remains that her “body positive” messages don’t quite make the cut. The line, “I won’t be no stick figure/silicone Barbie doll,” suggests that thinner body types are somehow less wholesome.
Along the same lines, the verse “I’m bringing booty back/go ahead and tell them skinny bitches that/no I’m just playing/I know you think you’re fat,” acknowledges that thin girls have body image issues too, but nothing addresses those issues. Instead, it jumps right back on the curvy-girls-are-superior train.
Meanwhile, Minaj manages to condemn skinny girls three times in as many lines.
Skinny shaming is not the worst thing to occur in today’s society, but it remains an issue that gets swept under the rug. The general idea is that insulting overweight body types is so much more of a problem that a little bit of skinny shaming here and there can’t be that bad. But whether you are shaming someone for being overweight or underweight, it is still going to have a negative impact on his or her body image.
By all means, curvy girls should be proud enough and confident enough to love their bodies, but society today is so focused on celebrating curvy girls that it has started attacking skinny ones.
It’s almost as if we have to attach a negative stereotype to something, so which ever body type we choose to celebrate, we leave the other to be condemned.
Written by Sarah Fornshell’15