Pattie Thomas, Ph.D. & Carl Wilkerson,
TAKING UP SPACE
How Eating Well & Exercising Regularly Changed My
October 2005 (trade paperback)
January 2012 (ebook with additional 2012 preface)
Pattie Thomas author page on Pearlsong
Press website | Pearlsong Press blog
about Pattie Thomas | The Ample
Traveler website | Pattie's
The Declaration of Taking Up Space
Pattie Thomas and her husband
and co-author, Carl Wilkerson, live in Las Vegas, NV, where they run
SINdustry City Media. Pattie examines fattism and its consequences at the Psychology
Today blog I Take Up Space. She
Carl blog about their adventures as a dyad with disabilities at their
Psychology Today blog CWD (Couples With
Traveler website documents the year they spent in an RV traveling
across several states (and a day trip to Mexico) looking for restaurants, hotels, stadiums, RV parks, and
attractions that are universally accessible.
SPACE full media kit
(TAKING UP SPACE flyer, biographies of Pattie Thomas, Ph.D.
co-author Carl Wilkerson, M.B.A., press release, 10 Questions,
Q & A on Size Diversity, Tips for Fighting Fat Stigma,
& list of Health At Every Size experts)
TAKING UP SPACE color flyer | TAKING UP SPACE black & white flyer
Press release on TAKING UP SPACE
10 Questions for TAKING UP SPACE author Pattie
(1-page interview resource: brief description of
TAKING UP SPACE & 10 questions for author to address)
Pattie Thomas radio/tv biography (30
seconds) |Pattie Thomas
Carl Wilkerson radio/tv biography (30
seconds) | Carl Wilkerson
Q & A on Size
Authored & copyrighted by Miriam Berg, President,
Council on Size & Weight Discrimination
(used with permission)
Fighting Fat Stigma
Co-authored by Pattie Thomas & Veronica Cook-Euell
Health At Every Size
Categorized list of experts on Health At Every Size,
with contact info
Taking Up Space cover 300 dpi
Taking Up Space cover 72 dpi
Pattie Thomas, Ph.D.
& her husband &co-author Carl
PRAISE for Taking Up
"...a feast of information, ideas, talking points, discussions. Anyone
who has struggled with weight or who works with clients who face these issues will find this book
challenging, disturbing, and ultimately comforting as it attempts to change deeply held prejudices that for
most of us are unconscious."
Susan Hammonds-White, Ed.D, LPC/MHSP
Nashville Psychotherapy Institute 2006-2007 co-chair
"Taking Up Space is among the best books I've
read on the costs of stigma for fat people and society. Written for the 'average reader,' it is
sophisticated, funny and touching. Dr. Pattie Thomas, with her husband and co-author, Carl Wilkerson, have
clearly demonstrated what we atSize Matters, Too have
been telling our clients and radio audiences for years—size prejudice is costing our country a bundle in
wasted human resources, and accommodating size diversity is good business, as well as the right thing to
"I will be recommending this book to my clients and my listeners. It is a must-read for all people of size and
people of all sizes!"
Veronica Cook Euell
Euell Consulting Group, LLC
Host, WCRS (Akron, OH)
& online radio
Size Matters with
"Taking Up Space was so powerfully
and beautifully written that I did not want it to end. With evocative and witty prose, Dr. Thomas
addresses the issues that took me years to learn: If we are ever to be content with ourselves, we must
understand and challenge those aspects of our society that tear us down.
"As a nutritionist who has had to develop a new understanding of eating and weight issues
successfully treat my clients, it is clear to me that Dr. Thomas has captured the essence of what true change and
true happiness are all about. A must-read for people of ALL sizes. I will be recommending
this to all my clients."
Karin Kratina, Ph.D., R.D., LD/N
Nutrition Therapist, Author, Speaker
Nutrition Coordinator, Eating Disorders Program, University of Florida
"Thomas's incisive blend of sociological inquiry and personal narrative
amounts to a provocative treatise on fat oppression in our culture. Taking Up
Space is a kind of roadmap through the minefield of the "war on
obesity," and it offers protection to the reader ready to fight for cultural change surrounding
the meaning of fatness."
Kathleen LeBesco, Ph.D.
Author, Revolting Bodies:
The Struggle to Redefine Fat Identity
"Take it as a given that we all come to a new book on a certain topic or
by a certain author with expectations: what the story will be, who will be important among the cast of
characters, how we are likely to feel as we read it, all the way up to how long it will take
to read. I came to Dr. Pattie Thomas' book with 20 years of experience reading stories of courageous fat people's
journeys from internalized self-hatred and despair to courageous
self-acceptance. I have been uplifted, righteously angered, and supported in my own efforts as a fat human being
and activist by each of them. I expected more of the same from Dr.
Thomas' book and would have been content if that had been the case. I also expected that it would take me, at most,
a weekend to get through the whole thing. I was wrong.
"Taking Up Space is an intelligent, holistic treatment on the topic of fat
acceptance. Dr. Thomas has presented her self-portrait in a manner similar to that of some of my favorite
authors. But she has also provided the social/political/economic context for her inner and outer transformation and
has thus presented us with a rich and colorful landscape in which her journey is only one small part. Further, she
points out to each of us own our potential space in the masterpiece and invites us to use our own palettes to
world into a thing of beauty, recognizing that we are already beautiful and need only to own that
knowledge. Taking Up Space does exactly that—takes up space in
the mind and heart of
the reader, soothing and reassuring even as it confronts and challenges. Dr. Thomas' optimism renews my faith that
the work of one person does matter, and that to save one life (especially one's own) is to save the whole
Claudia A. Clark, Ph.D.
Director, Association for Size Diversity
Psychologist, Counseling Center, Bowling Green State University
"Taking Up Space could be called a memoir with a Ph.D., or it could be called sociology with a
heart. Pattie Thomas brings to the table her careful study and analysis of the medical, political,
and social aspects of weight in our culture. To this she adds her witty and deeply felt poetry, as well as
her revealing and personal journal (and journey) on the path to self-love. That path, she shows, requires
that fat people recognize the bigotry that is aimed at them.
"Written in a lucid and readable style, this book provides insights and
resources for professionals as well as for those who struggle with issues of weight and body
Up Space should be required reading for all those who want to help make this world a better
President,Council on Size &
"Taking Up Spaceis the poignant saga of how one woman has come to grips with being large in a society
in which "thin" is worshipped as the ideal. Dr. Pattie Thomas, with her brilliant writing style,
shares the pain of her battles. Not just the emotional and psychological
pain of being large in a small world, but the actual physical pain of two chronic diseases with which she has to
"In Taking Up Space, Dr. Thomas often refers to herself as the reluctant
warrior. But as she shares her battle with personal weight issues, as she bravely takes on the societal and
medical stigmas that daily drain people of size, she truly becomes a brave sumo warrior who leads the way
into battle against the poison darts that are constantly hurled at us.
"Dr. Thomas is such a good example of what our society does to a person. She obviously has a
brilliant mind. She is a deep thinker, a very good writer, a warm, caring person. But all that our
brainwashed world can see is the package that holds her wonderful mind and heart.
"My heart cries for all the time that she, and others like her—you, me, thousands—have lost
obsessing over weight when we should have been using that time to make this world a better
"The personal is political, and the political is personal—Dr. Thomas
offers her perspective as a thoughtful sociologist to examine the experience of being a fat woman here and
"A consciousness-raising group is packed between the covers of this book. You will not think
the same way about your own experiences after reading it. Artful response to stigma!"
Deb Burgard, Ph.D.
Eating Disorders Specialist
Great Shape: The First Fitness Guide for Large
creator of BodyPositive.com ShowMeTheData.info
Health At Every Size practitioner
"This book has punch—from its personal fat narrative to the social context that
stigmatizes a proper identity.
"I was struck with how powerful the story became as the myths, poetry, and sage advice conveyed both the dignity
and pain of a condition that is increasingly medicalized as obesity. Taken away from its place as a way of life and
alternative drama of experience, fat gains embodiment and personal dignity, while also claiming a space in the
social world for one human variation among many.
"This is a story about acceptance, of the fat self and its body, one in need of repeated telling to others and to a
public that are largely silent on acceptability."
Jay Gubrium, Ph.D.
Professor & Chair
Department of Sociology
University of Missouri
"Dr. Thomas brings her breadth of scholarship,the wretched open heart of her own life story
and the sublime artistry of her poetry into this analysis of the life of fat people. The book centers on her
life and experience but holds the truth of the difficult world we fat people navigate in terms of attitudes,
projections and stereotypes. It is not a dour read but rather a call for a paradigm
shift that comes from her own mind, heart and body. The fat community is well served by her