Virgie Tovar

Virgie Tovar

Bio

Virgie Tovar, MA is an author, activist and one of the nation's leading experts and lecturers on fat discrimination and body image. She is the editor of Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love and Fashion (Seal Press, November 2012) and the mind behind #LoseHateNotWeight. She holds a Master's degree in Human Sexuality with a focus on the intersections of body size, race and gender. After teaching "Female Sexuality" at the University of California at Berkeley, where she completed a Bachelor's degree in Political Science in 2005, she went onto host "The Virgie Show" (CBS Radio) in San Francisco. She is certified as a sex educator and was voted Best Sex Writer by the Bay Area Guardian in 2008 for her first book. Virgie has been featured by the New York Times, MTV, Al Jazeera, the San Francisco Chronicle, NPR, Huffington Post, Bust Magazine, Jezebel, 7x7 Magazine, XOJane, and SF Weekly as well as on Women’s Entertainment Television and The Ricki Lake Show. Her most recent speaking engagements have included University of Washington, Earlham College, Hollins University, University of California at Berkeley, University of California at Davis, California College of the Arts, Sonoma State University, and Humboldt State University. She lives in San Francisco and offers workshops and lectures nationwide. Find her online at www.virgietovar.com. And on instagram. 

Virgie Tovar Articles

Image from the author's Instagram (@virgietovar)

Take The Cake: Thin People Aren't "Naturally" Superior To Fat People

Fat people, we do not have to acquiesce to our culture's normalization of hierarchy. We do not have to turn the other cheek. Joy does not come at the expense of your dignity, of your humanity.

Read...

Take The Cake: #NotYourLena OR How All Fat Women Are Not The Same Person

So, recently I started dipping my toe back into the poisonous dump site that is straight dating. Deep breath.

Read...
image credit Virgie Tovar

Take The Cake: The BoPo-Washing Of Weight Watchers (& The Weight Loss Industry)

How does a weight loss company sell weight loss products to people who don’t want to be fat but also don’t want to say they don’t want to be fat or identify as being on a diet? This question lives at the heart of what I’m going to call “BoPo-washing.” BoPo-washing is the new paradigm of companies using weight-neutral or body positive language in order to peddle products.

Read...
Fatphobia comes in all shapes and sizes (Image Credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram)

Take the Cake: That Time I Got Accused of Causing Diabetes

October is a busy month for me. It’s one of two peak periods for lecture bookings on university campuses.

Read...
image credit Virgie Tovar

Take The Cake: Revisiting the Fat Liberation Manifesto 46 Years Later

A lot of people don’t know this, but fat activism has been around in the United States since the 1960s. Yes, it’s true!

Read...
image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: To The Man In Seat 36D Who Fat-Shamed Our Flight Attendant ​

Man in 36D who fat-shamed our flight attendant, what happened to you? What (or who) shaped you into someone who could take so much from others?

Read...
"When I think of the ways that fat people are treated as a group, I don’t know how the descriptors “hatred” and “intolerance” cannot be used to describe the behaviors that fat people deal with on a daily basis."

Take The Cake: Don't Let Anyone Make You Feel Ashamed Of Your Body

One of the things that has become exceedingly obvious to me is how our current cultural attitudes toward fat people are steeped in bigotry.

Read...
image credit: Virgie Tovar via Instagram

Take The Cake: 3 Tips For Normalizing How Your Fat Body Moves, Looks & Feels

Bodies of all sizes do amazing stuff all the time. Don't let fatphobia hijack your body's right to exist in all its vast complexity.

Read...
When I realized I wanted to take on fat shaming and diet culture, my intuitive response was to start with me.

Take The Cake: Is Empowerment, Like, Victim Blaming's Cousin?

As I’ve begun to teach other people about how to break up with diet culture, I offer everything in my personal artillery. And I’m proud of that. I love that. However, I’m always quick to remind them that fatphobia isn’t their problem to fix because they — WE — didn’t create it. Our job is to heal ourselves and to live life on our own terms.

Read...