Disability or a Personal Lifestyle? Examining Indian and Foreign Depictions of Obesity in “Double XL” and “The Whale”


Growing obesity rates are a serious problem among Indigenous populations in several nations throughout the world. Numerous media studies have been done on various elements of obesity, but there hasn't been much research done on how obesity is portrayed in the media, particularly in films. Recent films released from both industries with the underlying theme of obesity are taken as primary sources. The Whale, directed by Darren Aronofsky and Double XL by Satram Ramani which both came out in 2022, are compared using quantitative content analysis. The paper analyses how obesity is portrayed in Indian and foreign films through a comparative study of contemporary Hollywood(American) and Bollywood(Indian) cinema. The themes explored in this paper are, firstly the framing of obesity in both films, secondly, the social problems faced by obese characters in the film and lastly, how gender roles are defined in the film. Goffman’s theory of social stigma which mentally classifies an individual as undesirable based on attributes like physical appearance and deformations is applied in analysing the content of both films through their screenplay and script.

Author Information
Balagopal A. M., Manipal University Jaipur, India
Richa Arora, Manipal University Jaipur, India

Paper Information
Conference: KAMC2023
Stream: Film Studies

This paper is part of the KAMC2023 Conference Proceedings (View)
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To cite this article:
M. B., & Arora R. (2023) Disability or a Personal Lifestyle? Examining Indian and Foreign Depictions of Obesity in “Double XL” and “The Whale” ISSN: 2436-0503 – The Kyoto Conference on Arts, Media & Culture 2023: Official Conference Proceedings https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2436-0503.2023.48
To link to this article: https://doi.org/10.22492/issn.2436-0503.2023.48

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon