Body of Truth

Body of Truth

How Science, History, and Culture Drive Our Obsession With Weight-- and What We Can Do About It

Book - 2015
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"Over the last 25 years, our longing for thinness has morphed into a relentless cultural obsession with weight and body image. You can't be a woman or girl (or, increasingly, a man or boy) in America today and not grapple with the size and shape of your body, your daughter's body, other women's bodies. Even the most confident people have to find a way through a daily gauntlet of voices and images talking, admonishing, warning us about what size we should be, how much we should weigh, what we should eat and what we shouldn't. Obsessing about weight has become a ritual and a refrain, punctuating our every relationship, including the ones with ourselves. It's time to change the conversation around weight. Harriet Brown has explored the conundrums of weight and body image for more than a decade, as a science journalist, as a woman who has struggled with weight, as a mother, wife, and professor. In this book, she describes how biology, psychology, metabolism, media, and culture come together to shape our ongoing obsession with our bodies, and what we can learn from them to help us shift the way we think. Brown exposes some of the myths behind the rhetoric of obesity, gives historical and contemporary context for what it means to be "fat," and offers readers ways to set aside the hysteria and think about weight and health in more nuanced and accurate ways"--Publisher.
Publisher: Boston, MA : Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group, 2015.
Edition: First Da Capo Press edition.
ISBN: 9780738217697
Branch Call Number: 613.25 BRO
Characteristics: xxx, 273 pages ; 22 cm

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TheresaAJ
Sep 02, 2015

Harriet Brown has written a very readable book that weds the scientific research on weight loss and obesity with our current cultural obsessions and standards. She intersperses the research with personal stories of women who live outside society's physical appearance norms. I think this book is the health and weight loss equivalent of What's the Matter with Kansas, a work that explored what compelled voters in that state to vote against their own best interests. The same media influences are the connector between the two topics. There are 27 pages of notes and a 23-page Selected Bibliography for those who want to pursue this topic further.

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