The painful pursuit of weight-loss pleasure in The Biggest Winner 4 | Intellect Skip to content
1981
Volume 15, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1751-9411
  • E-ISSN: 1751-942X

Abstract

The current article provides the first attempt to use Lévi-Strauss’s theory of binary opposition in the study of a reality TV programme, which is the Arab version of the American reality format . The major aim of this article is to reveal the stigmatization of obesity and the promotion of the thin body type in MBC’s . To reach this aim, a qualitative content analysis is applied to the journeys and fourteen episodes of the programme, whereby the utterances and behaviours of the different participants are coded in search of themes related to fatness and thinness using NVivo 12. The analysis comes to unveil the existence of two levels of dual reconstruction. The first superficial opposition exists between fatness and thinness, and the second binary opposition is established between pain and pleasure, which involve the opposing feelings associated with the first binary opposites of fatness and thinness. The two levels of binary opposition evidence that the narrative of the programme is predicated on building a contradiction between the pain of fatness and the pleasure of thinness to add drama to the reality show and distance Arab viewers from overweight bodies. The major finding of the study is that , despite being localized and given an Arab flavour, still echoes the same anti-fat rhetoric of the original American format and serves to promote the American cultural ideal of thinness in the Arab world.

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2022-10-01
2024-02-25
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