Chewing The Fat Analysis

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Selina Thompson’s one-woman show, ‘Chewing The Fat’ was performed in Stage 1 at Stage@Leeds on the 16th October 2014. The piece was an assortment of genres including, stand-up comedy and storytelling. Thompson tackled many common weight/body issues most of us feel at least once in our lives in a humorous and intimate way which allowed itself to an audience of all genders, ages, class, race and sexuality. The work developed many ongoing themes explored by Thompson, including her piece ‘Pat It and Prick It and Mark It with a ‘B’’, originally performed as part of the Spill Festival of Performance in 2014 at The National Theatre Studio. This was a durational performance where Thompson and her friend, Jess, invited the audience to ‘play’ with them…show more content…
The expressionist movement developed between 1905 – 1925. Presenting itself predominantly in Germany around 1910, expressionism is an “artistic style in which the artist attempts to depict not objective reality but rather the subjective emotions and responses that objects and events arouse in him.” (Expressionism, An expressionist artist would substitute objective reality for a visual object which, subjective to the artist, would represent the objective reality. In relation to ‘Chewing The Fat’, Thompson’s ‘objective reality’ was her troubled relationship with food and, for the most part, her struggles with overeating. As opposed to verbally guiding the audience through her emotions and experiences, she substituted them for objects such as donuts, rice pudding, a whole chicken and celebrity style magazines. Thompson sat centre stage talking about her past, whilst ripping pages from magazines before filling the donuts with the discarded pages to symbolise that, despite the influence of seeing slim, healthy models and weight loss plans, her compulsion for food was much stronger. She filled her black leggings with the magazine-stuffed donuts to exemplify her constant weight gain. In the final scene of ‘Chewing The Fat’, Thompson positioned herself on her hands and knees in centre stage as the piñata opened, pouring rice pudding all over her body, while her diary entry was read aloud. This was a visual and aural embodiment of the oppressed and taboo side of overeating and how it may actually be considered as an illness and eating

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