“Never Sink”, Marie de Brauer: a liberating comic

“Never Sink”, Marie de Brauer: a liberating comic

In a graphic novel never sink, journalist Marie de Brauer recounts her battle against thinness dictates, in order to love herself and her 113 kg. An intimate and militant story combined with the soft and colorful drawings of Lucymacaroni.

“I like to have long artificial nails, wear too much perfume, wear pink. I am funny, charismatic. I’m fat too. » The tone is set: sa never sink (Leduc Graphic), the reader knows that he is holding an honest autobiography in his hands. With humor and color, this story nevertheless deals with what hurts when you’re fat: it’s not the weight, but the long-internalized view and judgment of others.“Being a woman, grown up, fat, was my worst nightmareentrusts Marie de Brauer. I am 27 years old and I have become my worst nightmare. »

All you grossophobes?

In addition to self-acceptance, journalist Marie de Brauer also talks about how she did her fight against grossophobia. Because, from medical abuse to the internalization of disdain for the fat body, through the cruel lack of representation of fat people, bouts of fat phobia are numerous and recurring. Even Marie de Brauer was not spared, marked from her beginnings by the stigmatization of her greatness. Like a classical dance teacher who judges her kicks to be on par with prima ballerinas… except “to be a little rat, you have to be a little thinner”.

©Leduc Graphic/Lucymacaroni

Both in the private and in the public sphere, the author tells about ordinary grossophobia: this form of discrimination, included in the dictionary since 2019, means all attacks, conscious or unconscious, on big people. Result: the age of the first child is 8 years old! “Fatphobia is a global system that hates fat peoplenotes the author; this is what leads to inappropriate remarks towards a loved one or even to medical equating size with fatness, with disease. »

For Marie, this led her to censor herself on a daily basis – such as deciding not to sit on public transport for fear of “takes up too much space”. This internalized grossophobia also pollutes her relationship with others, with sexuality… But this “complex” is not inevitable for Marie de Brauer.

Exceed standards

In a society where thinness is a social norm, Marie decides to take responsibility for her fatness, to stop being ashamed of it and to stop parasitizing prohibitions of all kinds (“lose weight”, “get 36”, “be thin”). Activism, feminism and psychotherapy they allowed her to understand that the problem does not come from her, but from society and its heavy norms. “It was my good fortune to discover in early adulthood what fat phobia was,” says the author.

©Leduc Graphic/Lucymacaroni

actually, never sink is first and foremost a story about self-acceptance. The journalist tells how she managed, not without problems, to change the way she looks at herself. She also made this embodied narrative format her specialty. Already in 2020, she was filming a documentary Fat Maria’s lifewhere she mixed a personal story, meetings with other fat people and professionals.

She wanted to reveal herself even more with the graphic format. “During the writing of the comic, it was easier for me to reveal myself, to reveal my intimacy. Whereas with videos I instinctively put on the mask of a funny girl who has to entertain people. Well, that was another way of approaching this topic, more intimate”, she explains. Doubts, emotional uppercuts, but also the joy of living, determination and finally an assertion: Marie tells her life story without being shameless.

never sinkMarie de Brauer, Leduc Graphic, 2023.©Leduc Graphic/Lucymacaroni

Soft and inclusive design Lucymacaronidedicated designer, aware of the issue of diversity and the ban on women (she also drew A man on the pill 2022, edited by Marabulles) is at the service of Marie de Brauer’s text in perfect harmony. This graphic testimony is even more impressive: it is inspiring and liberating.

never sink Marie de Brauer (text) and Lucymacaroni (drawing), Leduc Graphic, 109 pp., €19.90. In bookstores from January 18, 2023.

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