The Women Student Union (WSU) at Florida State University hosted a screening of the movie Real Women Have Curves starring the award-winning actress, America Ferrera.
WSU is an agency on FSU’s campus, representing 56 percent of women on campus. Their mission is to empower, engage, embrace and unite women while promoting self-growth amongst one another.
Real Women Have Curves is a Coming of Age movie about a first generation, Mexican-American teenager named Ana Garcia, who lives in East Los Angeles. Throughout the film, Ana is constantly criticized by her mother for her size and for wanting to further her education after receiving a full scholarship to Columbia University.
Assistant Director of WSU, Khadijah Templier, felt it was necessary to show the film because it displayed a type of lifestyle that many women struggle with.
“I ultimately wanted to show this movie because I love the fact that it addresses self-image,” Templier said. “WSU promotes self-growth and places an emphasis on empowering women and I felt as though this film really spoke on that.”
In the film, Ana’s mother, Carmen, played by actress Lupe Ontiveros, constantly talks down to Ana and constantly calls her “fat” and “fatty” as if it were her name. Carmen believes Ana will not find a husband until she loses weight. Carmen also does not give Ana her blessing to move to New York for college because she believes Ana should stay home and learn how to cook, clean and sew.
Chioma Obukwelu, a 2nd year biology student at FSU, first heard about the viewing of Real Women Have Curves while browsing her university’s website.
“Once I saw what the movie was going to be about, I wanted to come and check it out,” Obukwelu said. “I felt like it is a really important issue that the women of my generation face. Women who are overweight are perceived as being ugly or not beautiful, so I think the topic sparked something in me.”
Real Women Have Curves is a film made to speak to women who struggle to find and accept themselves. Ana took a stand against her mother and tried to get her to understand the importance of loving who you are and what you look like.
Lydia Mansfield, a graduating senior at FSU, came out to the viewing with the hopes of gaining insight on different ways to empower other women.
“I love watching movies about females experiences,” Mansfield said. “I also happen to love America Ferrea,” she added.
Mansfield believes that the media has a tendency to portray the standard norm as a certain size, ethnicity or a certain economic level which can destroy the confidence of a female.
“What I loved most about the movie is the fact that the movie gave viewers a window into real female experiences from an angle that a lot of people do not stop and think about,” Mansfield said. “The movie allowed me to think about what it means to be a woman and difficulties many of us face.”