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Minding the Body: Women Writers on Body and Soul Paperback – June 20, 1995

4.2 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Twenty intensely personal essays on physical and emotional self-image by women writers from a wide range of ages, races, and conformity.

From Booklist

The era of birth control pills and legalized abortions is a golden age of freedom compared with our grandmothers' times. Yet, as this collection of fiction and nonfiction suggests, many women's relationships to their bodies are complex and sometimes baffling. So many women hate their bodies, often as a manifestation of a media-influenced body consciousness that exalts a narrow range of physical proportions including ultraslender hips and large breasts. The same media that facilitate such self-loathing also minutely document excessive forms of body awareness (anorexia, bulimia, purging), although rarely the complicated interplay of thoughts and emotions that exacerbates those conditions. The writings at hand generally dissect women's obsessions with media-manufactured body ideals that turn women's bodies into sexual bargaining chips. As they do, they bring new meaning to the notion of selling and being sold and to the term sexual politics. Whitney Scott --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 313 pages
  • Publisher: Anchor; Reprint edition (June 20, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 038547167X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385471671
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #639,630 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By A Customer on May 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
This collection of essays gives the reader the opportunity to experience the world through the different minds and bodies of several women, each with a different focus. The essays present a forum for the reader, no matter what shape, size, weight or configuration, to examine the way in which she views her own body and how society has insisted that we label ourselves. It encouraged me to look anew for perfections in my own body, and in the human body in general, and to focus less on perceived flaws.
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By A Customer on January 3, 2003
Format: Paperback
I first read this book at age 22 as required reading in a college women's studies class. It's themes: dieting, aging, the beauty myth, femininity and how women perceive their bodies individually and culturally, affected me and caused me to reflect on the abuse i had inflicted upon myself in my desire to be thin. Almost a decade later, i still have my dog-eared copy that i have reread many times as a source of inspiration and lent to most of my women friends. I recommend this book to all women and, in particular, to anyone struggling with a negative body image or eating disorder. It is an especially good book for young girls to read before unattainable media images undermine their self valuation and would be an excellent source of dialogue between parents and children.
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Format: Paperback
In this anthology edited by Patricia Foster, twenty women writers examine their relationship to their bodies with such topics as obesity, breast cancer, pregnancy and hair frosting. In "A Weight That Women Carry," Sallie Tisdale describes how she's started "to break the scale's spell," and accept her weight. In "Mirrors," Lucy Grealy describes her childhood battle with jaw cancer that left her face disfigured. In "Beauty and the Beast," Connie Porter relates her youthful battles to fit into Levis. The tones range from tart to rueful. Women readers will identify all too well.
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By A Customer on March 29, 2000
Format: Paperback
This collection of essays written by women focuses primarily on the female body and how it is veiwed by the world and by the individual. The essays allow the reader to look inside the minds of other women and view their struggles to forge a connection between mind and body. As a woman in my early forties, I could relate to each account which chronicles an attempt to come to terms with a body which is considered imperfect in a beauty driven world. This book helped me to consider the perfection of my own body, even as I am aging and my body is losing what the outside world considers its appeal. This collection inspires a focus on the wonders of our bodies, no matter what our age, weight or condition.
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By Tina on January 11, 2002
Format: Paperback
This is one of the best women's anthologies that I've read. There are many gems hidden within the stories. I can't pick any one favorite. I do recommend this book as a great read.
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