Fat positive activist taking message across the world video

A tour through the fat positive world, one country at a time, awaits a Palmerston North fat activist.

A tour through the fat positive world, one country at a time, awaits a Palmerston North fat activist. 

To celebrate the five-year milestone of her radio show, Friend of Marilyn, Massey University lecturer Cat Pause is taking it on tour, keen to  talk to people around the world about fat. 

Friend of Marilyn has run on Access Manawatu, a community radio station, for the last five years, with podcasts and blogs gaining recognition world-wide for celebrating fat people.

Friend of Marilyn radio show host Cat Pause is continuing on from New Zealand shows to Australia, the next step in her tour.
Warwick Smith/ Fairfax NZ.

Friend of Marilyn radio show host Cat Pause is continuing on from New Zealand shows to Australia, the next step in her tour.

"I didn't necessarily have any idea of when it would end. I had no idea that five years later I would still be doing the show," Pause said.

"There aren't really any fat-positive spaces in this world. [We] have few spaces where it's actually fat positive."

Hitting over 600 listeners on some shows, the fat activist has covered off New Zealand. She is now turning her attention to Australia, then Singapore. 

Having done about 165 shows, Pause said she expects the series to probably take over a year.

While ideally she would do a show for every country, she was particularly interested in Russia and countries in Africa.

She said she believed people mostly listened to her show through podcasts.

"There's a lot of people around the world that are involved in fat activism."

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As part of the show, she is interviewing all types of people to talk about fat in a positive way, including researchers, fashion-bloggers and artists. 

Fat positive was different to body positive which, Pause said, had a perceived limit: "All bodies are good bodies until you get this big. That's too big.

"There aren't really any fat-positive spaces in this world. [We] have few spaces where it's actually fat positive."

While at first it was other fat activists listening to the show, it has grown to a broader audience, Pause said. 

Messages of support also came in, such as "now my wife believes me when I say she's beautiful". 

But there were also hateful messages., Pause still remembers the first, and wears it like a badge of honour. 

"It was like 'I made it'. It was a really, really horrid email." 

 - Stuff

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