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Dawn French on Big Women - Part 3

Dawn French featured on the documentary series 'Fat', in 1998. The programme looked at the advantages and positive aspects of being big, including a profile of a female photographer who specialises in exploring the beauty of large women. Dawn French spoke about her personal experiences relating to her weight. The programme also included clips from 'Sex and Chocolate', and the French and Saunders sketch where Jennifer interviews 'Dr Eleanor Wood' (Dawn) on the radio. Dawn said that when she was going through the process of trying to adopt her daughter, the adoption agency went through over 6 months of investigation into her marriage, finance, home, etc. After this time, Dawn was eventually told that she was the wrong size for a woman of her height and so was therefore unfit to be a mother. Reluctantly, Dawn had to diet again. Dawn said that it was "a disease to think it's OK to marginalise big women ...People do not ask you to play a central role unless it is required [to be big]." She spoke about the fact that her profession was especially to blame for the discrimination of people because of their weight. "It has to be in the job description", either fat and depressed, or with an eating disorder, or "retarded". Even in her reviews Dawn said that she is always described as 'Fat and Funny', 'Rolypoly Dawn French' - there's always the adjective. Ending on a positive note, Dawn told of how her daughter has recently become interested in her own self image, and likes to take her clothes off and look at herself in the mirror. She'd look herself up and down, and then one day she said "Oh, I hope I get fat soon". Dawn glowed at this point, saying "It was so great, that she can value me as her fat mum".
© Copyright 2000 Caroline Marshall The Dawn French Website