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Fat: The Anthropology of an Obsession Paperback – January 13, 2005
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About the Author
Anne Meneley is an associate professor of anthropology at Trent University in Ontario, Canada, and is the author of Tournaments of Value: Sociability and Hierarchy in a Yemeni Town.
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Top Customer Reviews
This book, like Fat Is a Feminist Issue which I also read (finally!) recently, leaves you with lots of food for thought.
The standout essays for me were the first and last ones featured in the book.
Rebecca Popenoe essay on villages in Niger where women try to be as fat as possible was as fascinating as it was disturbing. I think being force fed millet porridge to become as fat as possible in your youth is just as bad if not worse than a society being obsessed with thinness.
The final essay on the activist group Pretty Porky and Pissed Off was funny, and intelligent and fiery ...and made me want to march on the streets and join the group members in throwing peanut butter sandwiches at people. (I agree with the need for advocacy and the sandwich throwing bit just sounded really fun.)
The essay on olive oil was very good as well and made me want to put good quality extra virgin oil on something and eat it, immediately.
The essays are each quite short and the book is short so I don't want to write too much and give too much away to those that are yet to read this book.
I did have one quibble with this book though, and that is in the quality of the nutritional information it gave about fat. I know that this topic is really beyond the scope of this book. I understand that.Read more ›
Some of the ways fat is explored is as an aesthetic, as a substance to be guarded or discarded, valued and desired, or abhorred. Most importantly, the essays examine the social, political, psychological, and historical contexts in which "fat" is constructed. I would recommend at least a few of the essays to friends (and have), in particular the essays on olive oil and Starbucks.
While I thought some of the essays might be a little dated (the book was published in 2005 and I read it in 2011) (e.g. the essay titled "Phat"), the book nevertheless presented valuable and intriguing points of view. I think it challenges people to think about fat in new ways.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very interesting read if you are interested in nutrition. Definitely some food for thought and a few chuckles along the way.Published 17 months ago by M.M.
exempting the first essay which was both eloquent and provocative, the individual anthropological pieces are not expertly written, and not terribly interesting either.Published on January 9, 2014 by Danielle Perszyk
This study reflects differing perspectives on fat. I enjoyed reading the comprehensive, informative collection. Read morePublished on May 9, 2013 by Carol M. Collins
It was very interesting. I learnt a lot about how fat is viewed, perceived and valued in different cultures. I highly recommend it.Published on April 25, 2013 by Adriana Nelida Coca