I am the author of three books, numerous chapters in edited books, and a clutch of peer-reviewed academic articles.

fatactivism150x240Cooper, C. (2016) Fat Activism: A Radical Social Movement. Bristol: HammerOn Press.

Based on my PhD thesis, this book is a rare insider’s view of fat people speaking about their lives and politics on their own terms. It is part of a new wave of accessible, accountable and rigorous work emerging through Research Justice and the Para-Academy.

More information and ordering via HammerOn Press.


fat and proudCooper, C. (1998) Fat and Proud: The Politics of Size. London: The Women’s Press.

Based on my Master’s dissertation, Fat and Proud: The Politics of Size is one of the first to describe and theorise fat activism. It pre-dates and anticipates some of the debates that are now commonplace post-obesity epidemic. Fat and Proud is one of the founding texts in the field of Fat Studies.

It includes first person accounts, critiques not only the medicalisation of fatness but also the pathologising of it through books such as Fat Is A Feminist Issue, and proposes an alternative way of thinking about fat, based on the Social Model of Disability. The book explores fat people’s agency, which it outlines and locates in historical-cultural terms, and endorses the shift towards civil rights.

Hi Charlotte, I am so excited to meet you finally. Your book is my bible. I am basing a lot of my work for my PhD dissertation in Women’s Studies on it and the theories of Pretty Porky and Pissed Off are deeply deeply indebted to you. You are a hero and role model to me. Sincerely, Allyson Mitchell

Please note that The Women’s Press removed words and passages from the book that they disagreed with politically. These included the concept ‘queer,’ including instances where I described myself as queer; references to FaT GiRL zine; references to trans people; criticisms of radical lesbian feminism; and a quote from one of the interviewees who said that some fat women are responsible for their own oppression.

cherryCooper, C. (2002) Cherry. London: Millivres Prowler.

Cherry is offers a subversive trip through the grimy underbelly of the rainbow nation. It’s the story of Ramona, a thrill-seeking young woman, who is about to find out that being a real life queer bears little resemblance to the lesbians in the books she’s been reading under the covers. Before long she’s on a mission to become the queen of London’s A-Dyke scene via a series of misadventures with a cast of freaks, creeps, lovers and assorted folks that you would never want to bring home to meet mother.

DIVA magazine readers voted my first novel their favourite read but Cherry highlighted Canada Customs’ long-standing problem with censorship, which impacts severely on independent LGBT bookshops. They seized a shipment of books for obscenity in September 2002, releasing it after a campaign demonstrating the book’s artistic merit.

Contributions to edited books

Evand B. and Cooper, C. (2016) Reframing fatness: critiquing ‘obesity’ in Whitehead, A. and Woods, A. (eds.) The Edinburgh Companion to the Critical Medical Humanities. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.

Cooper, C. (2014) ‘No More Stitch-Ups!,’ in Wardrop, A. and Withers, D. (eds.) The Para-Academic Handbook. Bristol: HammerOn Press, 206-231.

Cooper, C. (2012) ‘Hey Sisters, Welcome to My World,’ in Tovar, V. Hot & Heavy: Fierce Fat Girls on Life, Love & Fashion. Berekeley, CA: Seal Press, 65-70.

Cooper, C. (2011) ‘Fat Lib: How Activism Expands The Obesity Debate’, in: Rich, E., Monaghan, L. & Aphramor, L. (eds.) Debating Obesity: Critical Perspectives. Basingstoke: Palgrave, 164-191.

Cooper, C. (2009) ‘Maybe it should be called Fat American Studies?’, in: Rothblum, E. & Solovay, S. (eds.) The Fat Studies Reader. New York: New York University Press, 327-333.

Cooper, C. (2009) ‘Fat Activism in Ten Astonishing, Beguiling, Inspiring and Beautiful Episodes’, in: Tomrley, C. & Kaloski Naylor, A. (eds.) Fat Studies In The UK. York: Raw Nerve Books, 19-31.

Cooper, C. (2006) ‘I was a teenaged go-go girl’, in Stevens, A. (ed.), The Edgier Waters: new writing from literary upstarts. London: Snow Books.

Cooper, C. (2004) ‘Jerk’, in Fox, A. (ed.), Va-Va-Voom: Red Hot Lesbian Erotica. London: Millivres-Prowler Group Ltd.

Cooper, C. (2004) ‘This Is Lesbian Luv’, in Kramer Bussel, R. and Bias, S. (eds.), Up All Night: Adventures in Lesbian Sex. Los Angeles: Alyson Books.

Cooper, C. (2003) ‘Swing It Baby!’ Journal of Bisexuality, 3: 3&4, 87-92.

Cooper, C. (2003) ‘When the car slammed into me’, in Sanders, H. (ed.), Necrologue: The Diva Book of the Dead and the Undead. London: Millivres Prowler.

Cooper, C. (2000) ‘I Heart Super-8’ and ‘Found’, in Jolliffe, K. (ed.), Cheap Date. Brighton: Slab-o-Concrete Publications.

Cooper, C (1998) ‘Charlotte Cooper, aged 18’, in Cole, C. (ed.), Between You and Me: Real-Life Diaries and Letters by Women Writers. London: the Women’s Press.

Cooper, C. (1998) ‘Two Virgins’, in Foster, N. (ed.) Awakening the Virgin: True Tales of Seduction. Los Angeles: Alyson Books.

Cooper, C. (1998) ‘My Dream Date’, in Smith, E. (ed.), The GirlFrenzy Millennial. Brighton: Slab-o-Concrete Publications.

Cooper, C. (1996) ‘Fitting’, in: Bernstein, R. & Clark Silberman, S. (eds.) Generation Q: gays, lesbians and bisexuals born around 1969’s Stonewall riots tell their stories of growing up in the age of information. Los Angeles: Alyson.

Academic publishing

Gingras, J. and Cooper, C. (2013) ‘Down the Rabbit Hole: A Critique of the ® in HAES®’, Journal of Critical Dietetics, 1(3), 2-5.

Cooper, C. & Murray, S. (2012) ‘Fat Activist Community: A Conversation Piece’, Somatechnics, 2:1, 127-138.

Cooper, C. (2012) ‘A Queer and Trans Fat Activist Timeline: Queering Fat Activist Nationality and Cultural Imperialism’. Fat Studies: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Body Weight and Society. 1:1, 61-74.

Cooper, C. (2011) ‘Review: Sander Gilman: Fat: A Cultural History of Obesity’, Sociology, 45: 1, 181-183.

Cooper, C. (2010) ‘Fat Studies: Mapping The Field’, Sociology Compass, 4: 12, 1020-1034.

Cooper, C. (2010) ‘Olympics/Uhlympics: Living in the Shadow of the Beast’ [online], thirdspace, 9:2. Available:

Cooper, C. (1997) ‘Can a Fat Woman Call Herself Disabled?’, Disability & Society, 12: 1, 31-41. (available in translation as ‘Darf sich einer übergewichtige Frau «behindert» nennen?’ in Weisser, J. and Renggli, C. (2004), ed. Disability Studies: Ein lesebuch. Switzerland: SZH CSPS Edition).