Professor Returns to Colbert Report
Amy Farrell discusses her new book, “Fat Shame”
by Paul Dempsey
May 6, 2011
College professors are accustomed to discussing their research in sedate scholarly conferences and small seminar rooms. Amy Farrell does it on Comedy Central.
The professor of American studies and women’s & gender studies made her second appearance on Comedy Central’s The Colbert Report this week. She discussed her new book, Fat Shame, with host Stephen Colbert.
Farrell spoke about the way the diet industry reinforces a cultural view that stigmatizes fatness. She discussed shifting attitudes toward weight throughout American history, noting that fatness was once seen as a sign of wealth.
In October 2009, during her first appearance on The Colbert Report, Farrell argued against charging higher insurance rates for fat people. In both appearances she remained unflappable and managed to get her ideas across despite continual joking from host Stephen Colbert.
Farrell was recently named the John J. Curley ’60 and Ann Conser Curley ’63 Faculty Chair in the Liberal Arts. Her research includes 20th-century U.S. culture, mass media, feminist theory and fat studies. In April she spoke about her book at a FaculTea lecture in the library.
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