The Fat Girl Essay

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Madsen Hardy has a doctorate in English literature and is a freelance writer and editor. In the following essay, she discusses Louise's evolving attitude toward her weight in the context of 'fat acceptance.'

"Her name was Louise." So opens Andre Dubus's short story "The Fat Girl." But before readers even learn the protagonist's name, they have already learned the most important aspect of her identity from the story's title. The frank adjective "fat" is a powerful label. The story outlines how Louise negotiates this identity, focusing on her relationships with her parents, female friends, and men. Louise sees herself as a fat person in a double way—in terms of her own, private self-image, which includes self-love and pleasure, and in terms of how others see her, which centers on pity, worry, and disgust. Even when she succeeds in losing weight, fatness remains a dominant...

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This section contains 1,633 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Fat Girl Study Guide
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The Fat Girl from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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