The (Em)Power List 2018: Supriya Joshi
32, Writer and stand-up comedian
Last year, a young woman gave it back to the trolls who fat-shamed her on Twitter without batting an eyelash. AIB writer and comedian Supriya Joshi’s powerful tweet read, ‘Traditionally, fat women like myself have served as the punchline for almost every joke imaginable…. Another additional layer (pardon the pun) to this is that along with being fat, I am also a woman. It has taken me a lifetime to love my body, and I will not let the small-mindedness of a few misguided people take that away from me….’ Operating under the sobriquet of Supaarwoman on social media and her blog, this Mumbaikar and self-proclaimed feminist is known for her outspoken ways. One particularly inspiring example of this is her Dating is Already Hard, and Being Fat Just Adds That “Extra Layer” piece for The Quint — an article that promotes self-love and body positivity. #SkinnyGoddess, a hashtag created by her for herself, also aims to create awareness by poking fun of conventional ideals of beauty. ‘On the internet, you can be whoever you want to be. So, why can’t I be a #SkinnyGoddess? I love myself, and I see myself as a goddess, so that’s who I am.’ You need only look to her Twitter timeline, sprinkled with her signature acerbic wit, personal truths, insightful social commentary and make-up selfies, to get an essence of her indomitable spirit. You’d also do well to check out the new web series Man Up, which takes on issues relating to gender and male privileges in a humorous way. You can also keep an eye out for the reality show Queens vs Kings that features Joshi alongside comedians Anu Menon aka Lola Kutty, Kaavya Bector and Saadiya Ali in the women’s team.
“Women easily internalise guilt, it could be about anything, be it loving or dressing in a particular manner. She represents self-confidence. Kudos to her for breaking cultural stereotypes through her sharp (and political) humour. More power to her in her efforts to break the layers of patriarchy!”
– Paroj Banerjee, 31, PhD Student, London