Weight Bias Internalization as an Embodied Process: Understanding How Obesity Stigma Gets Under the Skin
journal contributionposted on 18.06.2019, 15:35 by Oli Williams, Ellen Annandale
This Opinion Article contributes to this Special Issue a supportive critique of the weight bias internalization analysis. The explicit aim is to broaden the ways in which “internalization” is currently defined and analyzed in research on weight bias and to encourage interdisciplinary research endeavors to increase our understanding of its implications. Both authors are sociologists who understand and analyse the individual condition as embodied1. In short, we are interested in how and in what ways the social world “gets under the skin” and thus has psychosomatic implications. It is for this reason why, despite commending much of the scholarship on weight bias internalization and accepting the validity of the research findings, we feel it necessary to challenge the current application of the “internalization” terminology. Our argument is that weight bias internalization research is limited in that it is largely disembodied. This is considered problematic because to fully understand the implications of weight bias internalization (the express concern of this Special Issue), it is necessary to appreciate both how and in what ways it gets under the skin.