September 09, 2017

Emma Watson picks Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxane Gay for Our Shared Shelf




"Dear Our Shared Shelf,

Roxane Gay describes her book ‘Hunger’ as a “memoir about my body”. It traverses many of the issues surrounding our human bodies, the sexual experiences we have, our relationship with food, how we feel about our own bodies and the difference gender has to play on a body… When exploring how society treats people of her size, Gay asks: “What does it say about our culture that the desire for weight loss is considered a default feature of womanhood?”

What struck me the most about the book is Roxane’s searing honesty. We know that there are many people of all genders who do not feel they can talk about their experiences - who live their lives carrying the huge burden of abuse and trauma. As the author suggests, many people do not realise the suffering that follows an act like the one Roxane experienced, and how it can completely alter the way the victim identifies with themselves and others.

While parts of the book are difficult to read, it highlights the very real damage done by sexual violence and puts you in the mind and body of someone that has to move through the world in a different way. A small insight or perspective I feel grateful for now having and understanding a little bit better.

I am also re-reading essays from Gay’s ‘Bad Feminist’. We put such high expectations on ourselves as feminists, on other feminists, and the movement as a whole. It feels like such a relief to take ownership of words like “nasty woman” and “bad feminist”. They don’t have so much power this way and maybe they remind us not to hold ourselves and others to unreasonably high standards - we are all human after all and at different moments of our learning journeys. We need to feel free to be on those journeys and make mistakes. I hope if you get time you’ll enjoy what she has to say about this too.

Love,
Emma"

74 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent letter to her followers.

Levi said...

Very well said, Bravo! :D

Anonymous said...

It is me or Emma is something neglected with Our Shared Shelf and everything related to the UN?
It seems at first with the novelty of the moment she did many things and now she has run out of ideas :/

Anonymous said...

The frequency of the club is the same. But no events. It really slowed down. Like everything else.

Anonymous said...

To me, I would like you to travel to underdeveloped countries to see the difficulty of being a women in these countries.
She has only been on a trip to Africa since she is UN ambassador, I like her speeches and she is very appreciative in forum and speeches, but the reality is out there, not only in conferences and interviews :)

Thaïs said...

Great letter, a polite way to answer to all her haters.

Anonymous said...

Gay was/is one of her critics. She wrote about "celebrity feminists".

Anonymous said...

Gay was/is one of her critics. She wrote about "celebrity feminists".
Really? Interest :)

Anonymous said...

Can someone tell what's the "bad feminist" about cos i didnt read it

Anonymous said...

oop, that reference to "bad feminist" seems kinda shady. while i do respect the fact that everyone learns at their own pace, some of the things emma has said have been soooo tone deaf, and she gets really defensive when people try to check her on them. i wish she'd realize that being called out for being wrong and learning from that happens to everybody at some point. it's all a part of the process.

Anonymous said...

https://www.instagram.com/p/BY0wGAqlj6e/ - Seems to be Emma with Mack at London. Can you confirm, Eden?

Anonymous said...

I think there can be too much pressure on anyone in anything to be too perfect. I hope Emma does not use it as a defense because she was never really attacked. For someone of her status she gets off lightly. The Panama thing or Will A. pictures would have been a bigger scandal with other people. Thats also because she is pretty tame. Nothing wrong with that, there are enough fierce feminists . Some of them feel too forced in their aggression tho its more marketing than conviction. I feel Emmas heart is in the right place and her roles also speak for her conviction. It is also important to get men on board. a) you wont change the world without them b) they have their own struggles because of their gender (No feelings allowed to show, higher Jail sentences, in England women are 30% more likely to got to University etc)

Eden said...

"Seems to be Emma with Mack at London. Can you confirm, Eden?"

Not her. She's still in Amsterdam ;)

Anonymous said...

Lol, what did she say that was tone-deaf, related to feminism?

Anonymous said...

Everytime, i tell myself not to look at the comments. But i end up reading them all, everytime, and they make me very sad.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Emma. I've seen, both within and outside the movement, feminists are held to very high standards. One"wrong" step or maybe you say/do something that people misinterpret or they don't know enough about your ideas, then its either "oooh feminism is cancer!!" or its "your feminism is BAAD" . Its so fucking annoying.

Anonymous said...

About Will A pics- she wasn't in them.
About Panama- most rich people employ people to manage their taxes, coz of the amount of assets, etc, they own. Here, the problem was she hadn't paid the taxes for her shares in an offshore company. The person in charge of her taxes probably made a mistake and didn't include the offshore company shares in the tax payment. Small stuff like this happens all the time (i'm not talking abt complete tax evasion).

"...she was never really attacked"
Really? I wouldn't be so sure of that. Have you seen what ppl have said on social media? Also funnily enough, many of the press purposely headline their articles or choose to write about stuff that looks controversial or scandalous, just like it happens with every celebrity. Like for instance, i saw 100s of articles abt her out-of-context quote about beyonce, but there were atmost only 5-6 articles that reported the complete part abt beyonce, which emma had posted- which wasn't even that long. And 2 or 3 of them had even got the details wrong or didn't report the whole thing.
What i mean to say, she doesn't get let off easy or easier in any way.

Anonymous said...

Yea, i was going to say you cant really tell from that photo.

Anonymous said...

How do you know she s still in Amsterdam eden?? Are u sure she s not emma & mack?

Eden said...

People saw her in Amsterdam yesterday. 100% sure it wasn't her on that picture.

Anonymous said...

Emma got a bit of heat for her Beyonce comments. Other actresses get a lot more tho. Some say dumb crap so its more deserved but Emma rarely gets attacked. Good for her.
Feminists dont have to be perfect. But to be a feminist is to be better than the average person. If every feminist just acts like everyone else then you dont need the movement. Also if you want to change the behaviour of people you need to be an example. Feminists also tell people to not get defensive when they point out behaviour so feminists themselves shouldnt get defensive when called out. Ceraintly not a wealthy white woman like Emma. PoC have to deal with far worse and thats an understatement.

Anonymous said...

I liked the letter, but I think Emma is unable to take criticism. Like with the nude picture. When people called it a double standard and that she was sexualizing women, she could only answer 'what do my t*ts have to do with it.' obviously she did not understand her own concept of what it means to sexualize women. Every photo of a naked woman or man is art. It is in the eyes of the beholder- so therefore a very subjective poin of view. If you are truly a person against sexualizing women in any way, one understands that everyone has their own view of women- healthy or sick- the question is if it was right to feed any view.

Anonymous said...

Her comments on intersectionality/the concept of "white feminism" were hilariously off. She used the whole "I have two black bosses" thing as a defense which was ridiculous.

Ultimately, I think her idea of feminism is very non-threatening to the status quo. It's watered down and packaged to look as pretty as possible without actually changing or fixing things. If Emma had a more academic understanding of things, maybe she'd have more to talk about, but she's learning on her own, at her own pace. Good for her - but maybe she shouldn't have been the one to give the speeches and try to jump headfirst into being a public face of the movement when she just isn't ready yet.

Anonymous said...

Emmas job is too lure people in. She is doing a good job at that. And frankly if I can pick between someone like Emma and someone whose only public statements revovle around "white men are generally trash" then I'll pick Emma because she actually gets something done.
Mens Iusses also intersect with womens. Paternal leave is just one but a huge point for women in the work place. It is also wrong to say that campaign focuses too much on men. First of all its called HEforShe which kind of gives away that men will be involved. Also it still is almost exclusively about women. How often has Emma really talked about men? Some side remarks but it is still mostly about women. And how men can help them. If someone gets offended about the rare remakrs about mens issues well than we can also tell that person to stop being so defensive. If you got so annoyed by that I highly doubt you are interested in equality.

Anonymous said...

Oh my god.
And, no she didn't say she wasn't a white feminist becaise she had 2 black bosses, how bad is ur reading comprehension? She said she understands her privilege, and can and will use it to give a platform to lesser privileged people and poc/woc, but she cannot speak for woc as she does not hv that experience.

She also said that she mentioned/talked of her privilege/good fortune some 5 times in her speech, because many stupid ppl were saying she didn't say anything abt that in her speech, even though she clearly did.
THEN she said both the people heading HeforShe and UNWomen, who employed her, are black, and so they wouldn't let HeforShe only benefit white women or any other bullshit like that. If anything HeForShe has brought a platform with initiatives to lots of people universally.

Anonymous said...

No matter what anyone does, there will always be atleast a few fools saying "you're not accomplishing anything".

"If Emma had a more academic understanding of things, maybe she'd have more to talk about, but she's learning on her own, at her own pace"
Lmao. She doesn't talk about issues?? She's interviewed many people/writers and talked about things ranging from wage gap, body issues, feminist art to sex work and prostitution. She always selects insightful books by writers from different backgrounds, her bookclub has thousands of people from all over the world with different experiences-it's incredible, really.
Remember, officially, she's just one of the global ambassadors, yet she's very active, passionate and done much more than required.
And everyone is always learning. Its not like u keep learning, and then one fine day you are a "Good Feminist" in others' eyes. There will always be a lot to learn.

And she wasn't getting "defensive" when people talked of her tits on the cover. It's something people keep saying-Feminism for women being able to choose! No, don't wear that, u r showing ur tits!! So, When u come up against that, its frustrating.
With the Beyonce thing, she didn't say anything about Bey' s clothing, she said she "felt" like the /camera/ was being male voyeuristic. Which when i first saw the videos of Beyoncé album, i felt that too. Here's Bey talking about feminism and empowerment, but the camera was showing her thighs and chest. So i didn't know if she had chosen to do that or if the director did; which is exactly what emma said she "felt" conflicted about.But by the end of that interview, Tavi says that Bey has control over the direction and so, she chose to do it herself, which set it straight for emma-amd myself as well.

Emma is a great feminist, and I hope she continues to do the work she is doing. I hope she doesn't get bogged down with the hate. :)

Anonymous said...

100% agree with you

Anonymous said...

Emma admitted her privilege which is obviously way higher than 99% of people on the planet. Without it she wouldnt have that stage so it works together. Tbf "choice feminism" gets attacked frequently. Not every choice a woman makes is feminist.

Anonymous said...

Eden why do you have to approve comments why not just let users have freewill/expression? to comment without your approval. Just curious to know. Because at the same time it slows down/kills the exchange between other users because we have to wait for you to approve. Also at the same time you don't upload all the comments. No offense, sorry if you felt offended.

Eden said...

Don't worry, I'm not offended, and I actually agree :) I went back to moderating the comments because some people have abused them once again. I had to delete close to 20 comments in a row full of hate towards Rupert and his fans. It's not fun for me neither, but some people are completely clueless when it comes to respect. I'm also tired of drama so I try not to allow too many comments that might create that. I'm clearly failing though XD

Anonymous said...

Eden i am with you i consider you not to show bad comments related to any person cos its encourage other people comment bad so that not to show negativity is better i feel bad if someone say negative about rupert & emma.

Anonymous said...

Just because one disagrees with her approach, does not mean one hates her. With the tit thing, I did feel a double standard just because it was her opinion.She should know better. She sexualized herself after making a big deal of the offensiveness of sexualizing women. I am a feminist, and feminism is not just about having a choice, but empowering women to be responsible for the choices they make with their body. It seems to be that Emma missed that part. I excuse her youth, but that is an important aspect of true feminism.

Anonymous said...

I just want to point out for the record i dont mind Emma's tits... or more like cleavage. :)


On a serious note, someone pointed out that they felt Emma should do more with feminism, like go to places where women are mistreated more, etc.

Even though im not a feminist i have to wonder what it is that YOU (the criticizer) is doing to make the world a better place. What are you doing for gender equality or any movement? Its easy to chastise someone else (in this case Emma) for what you feel isnt enough but if you are not willing to put your own money where your mouth is than it comes off pretty hypocritical.

While its true that Emma has privilege, she is using it in a more productive way than most celebs. While she may not be perfect at least she is trying to do something in a positive manner which is more than i can say for most of Hollywood. Whether or not you feel she is a product or brand she is at least trying to use it for good purposes and should at least be given credit for that.

Anyway, enough about that. Lets get back to her tits!

Hazel said...

I want more respect form fans, met her by a coincidence! Last seen in a museum in London.
She eats - she farts - she laughs and crys - because she is human!


Thaïs said...

Hey Eden,
Would it be possible to force people to take a pseudonym in the comments ? Because in such an interesting discussions we don't quite know how to adress all the anonyms...

Anonymous said...

s she with mack?

Anonymous said...

Im a muslim. I belive in EQUALITY because it is something thag my faith teach me. Women and men are same. The only thing that make a difference between them is their good deed. As much as i agree with emma about equality but im in completely difference view about feminist things. ( sorry about my bad english)

Anonymous said...

As a social worker I work in families every day. That is one thing working with children that come from abusive backgrounds to learn not to be abusive to their spouses. Gender equality begins with learning respect for the opposite sex, and believe me that is hard enough in normal living situations with youth where verbal, emotional and physical violence against the man and the woman is daily routine. Every day I try to make a difference by just caring in that little space that is my responsibility, which is my own family and with the children and families I work. One does not need great activism. The sickness lies in violence and disrespect in the family. That is where help is needed.

Anonymous said...

Nobody denies she has human traits, but one sees a wrong picture and comments about it. That is the danger of putting yourself on the podium, you are in the public eye, tend to make mistakes and will be criticized. The fact is the fewer and the listener also thinks. That is a good thing.

Eva said...

Sexualizing yourself is your choice and she never took away any self responsibility for her choices. She has only said that women are often sexualized or made to sexualize themselves without their own choice or say, and that that is very fucked up. Those are wildly different things, so personally i didn't feel that she was being hypocritical in the slightest.
She was asking whether another woman was made to or was pressured into doing the same.
And being privileged isnt a bad thing, it just means you could use that to help ppl who dont hv the same privileges be heard. And also, if u talk about an issue, doesn't mean u hv to be personally affected by it. So, if Emma talks about inequalities women face, doesnt mean she is sayong,"ooh i hv faced such discrimination! Poor me!". She's using her voice and chose to be an activist. Also, doesn't mean she has never faced any of those inequalities.

Anonymous said...

Well I've gone right off her, if she's walking around a museum doing all those things.
(stern face).

Eden said...

"Would it be possible to force people to take a pseudonym in the comments ?"

unfortunately, no. All I can do is either allow everybody to comment or only people with a blogger accounts, or those with a google one.

Anonymous said...

lol, i think that person was talking about meeting her in a museum in london previously. not sometime recently. though i hope she wasn't farting in it.

Anonymous said...

Eden can i ask if something is happening in Emma's personal life maybe she is going through depression or even some crisis. Is it true she has ADHD tried searching but she does not confirm personally.

Anonymous said...

She said she is against sexualizing women. She never cleared who and under what circumstances. If you sexualize yourself especially as a celebrity, you do not support HeforShe. That is a tough statement I know, but a sexualized photo is seen by everyone- normal and abnormal people...I do not think I have to develop that idea.Not sexualizing yourself is also protecting women.

Anonymous said...

So human!drrrueppp...drrrueppp...
"Huh, Sean that was Emma Watson,"
"No way Edna."
"I tell you there she goes. She hasn't stopped."
"Let'S just stay right here and catch the wind." (Sean closes his eyes."

Wit Johns

Eden said...

"Eden can i ask if something is happening in Emma's personal life maybe she is going through depression or even some crisis. Is it true she has ADHD tried searching but she does not confirm personally."

I remember a person saying they remembered Emma talking about it in an interview but they never found that interview, so until someone does I personally consider it #fakenews.

Anonymous said...

I don't think she is depressed. I do think though, that she is re-evaluating her career. She is moving toward 30. She is not that good of an actress. I think she is redirecting her career and maybe getting more serious in her relationship.

Anonymous said...

Any news about Emma, Eden. Where she is? Or heard?

Anonymous said...

WOW drrue...what a fan-base.

George Little said...

is she with mack?
it looks like the end of the suspense is coming

Eden said...

"Any news about Emma, Eden. Where she is? Or heard?"

If there are no news posted, there are no news to be posted. Also, I haven't seen any sighting of her in the past few days.

Anonymous said...

I saw that Mack was recently tagged by Charlotte on instagram, and he commented on her photo. So, they're probably still together, even if we literally never see them.

I can't believe Emma has barely been seen for months now. Crazy.

Anonymous said...

Where's Charlotte instagram? Can you provide link

Anonymous said...

Who is Charlotte BTW

Anonymous said...

Emma is still going strong with her partner?. Is she still with the un cause she isn't going to heforshe 3rd year anniversary.

Anonymous said...

The most fun thing is that people talks talks talks. Eden.. start askin the source either please.

Anonymous said...

They could be friends but it is more likely Emma and Mack are still together. This would be her longest relationship, right?

Anonymous said...

Her IG name is charlottehayward. She's Emma's makeup artist/friend.

Anonymous said...

Lol, who really cares if she is still with someone or not. Its not anyone's business anyway.

Anonymous said...

This and Will A. have been her longest, I think?

I am curious as to why she won't be going to the UN anniversary. Idk why she'd do that unless she was working, or she wasn't affiliated with them anymore. Guess we'll see?

Thaïs said...

Her IG name is charlottehayward. She's Emma's makeup artist/friend.

I always wonder how everyone gets Emma's info like that...

Anonymous said...

What is this obsession with Mack and Emma. I think her longest relationship was with Will- at least so far.

Anonymous said...

wish she was single.

Anonymous said...

Are she and Sophie Sommers still friends?

George Little said...

I can't believe Emma has barely been seen for months now. Crazy.


last time was end of june
i wonder what the first fans would call a long time of unappearance

Anonymous said...

i think they haven't been seen together in quite a while. i assume they aren't friends anymore, but who knows tbh.

Anonymous said...

I think she is reevaluating her life and career and maybe spending some quality time with the man she loves. Good for her.

Anonymous said...

The two Williams lasted the longest and white Will will overtake asian Will. For how long is the question. Easier to have a relationship where both people have lots of free time.

Sophie and Emma are not friends any longer. I dont know why. They were not seen together for years.

How people have info of Charlotte? She is a professional hired by Emma. Its not hidden. She works for Emma like Luke does. She is also a friend it seems. They are mocking Macks instagram pictures where he jumps.

Eden said...

Emma and Sophie are still friends. They live in different cities and seem to have busy schedules (well, Sophie does at least) so of course we don't have pictures of them together anymore. But if you pay attention to their social media you'll see they still interact.

Anonymous said...

Mocking? Hahahaha.. Is there any photos on his instagram where he is with Emma or kissing, together? I would like to know.

Anonymous said...

How do Sophie and Emma still interact?

Anonymous said...

"Emma and Sophie are still friends. They live in different cities and seem to have busy schedules (well, Sophie does at least) so of course we don't have pictures of them together anymore. But if you pay attention to their social media you'll see they still interact."

Agreed.

There is both a picture and a small video of them together just done in the past year so clearly they are still friends. The only difference is both have different professions and live in different cities as you said. But the reality is we do not know how much they interact by phone or whatever but they have clearly been seen together.

Anonymous said...

If they only interact at twitter, that is indeed quite superficial.