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Revolting Bodies?: The Struggle to Redefine Fat Identity Paperback – December 16, 2003

ISBN-13: 978-1558494299 ISBN-10: 1558494294 Edition: 0th

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Revolting Bodies?: The Struggle to Redefine Fat Identity + The Fat Studies Reader + Fat Shame: Stigma and the Fat Body in American Culture
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: University of Massachusetts Press (December 16, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1558494294
  • ISBN-13: 978-1558494299
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 6 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #750,678 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Most of the prior literature in this field has consisted of isolated studies published in medical journals that show that diets don't work and that the general public has extremely negative views about fat people. It is time that the discourse about fat oppression looks more closely at sociocultural issues, and that is the focus of LeBesco's book. This is a significant contribution to the fields of women's studies, health, medicine, and all social sciences.

(Esther D. Rothblum, coeditor of Fat Oppression and Psychotherapy: A Feminist Perspective)

I can think of no other book that resembles Revolting Bodies? No one else has theorized on the shifting, self-contradicting, wildly political rhetoric of fat oppression. I look forward to using the book in my undergraduate women's studies classes, and I can imagine that it will be used in graduate courses in anthropology, philosophy, and psychology, as well as more professionally oriented classes in social work and nursing.... Lively, accessible, stimulating, and at times even profound.

(Michèle A. Barale, coeditor of The Lesbian and Gay Studies Reader)

Revolting Bodies? The Struggle to Redefine Fat Identity, is a seminal work in fat studies. 'Katie is trying to erase the line between fat and thin,' says Marilyn Wann, an activist who started a fat-studies e-mail list last year that has 120 subscribers. 'Her work is foundational.'

(The Chronicle of Higher Education)

From the Publisher

A provocative analysis of fatness as a cultural construct. --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By M. E. Wood on June 30, 2006
Format: Paperback
I found Revolting Bodies a difficult read. It doesn't have the light flair of Fat!So? or the humour of The Fat Girl's Guide to Life. It isn't full of funny cartoons are interesting sidebars. It is a serious look into the history and politics surrounding fat and the people attached to it. Through a series of chapters which read like short essays, LeBesco delves into the world of fat from a different perspective.

In the intro LeBesco states being fat goes beyond the physical and medical state and looks at it as a "political situation". The eight chapter titles are as follows:
* Organization and Embodiment: Politicizing and Historicizing Fatness
* Antidotes to Medical Discourse about Fatness
* Sexy/Beautiful/Fat
* Citizen Profane: Consumerism, Class, Race, and Body
* Revolution on a Rack: Fatness, Fashion, and Commodification
* Framing Fatness: Popular Representation of Obesity as Disability
* The Queerness of Fat
* The Resignification of Fat in Cyberspace
* Fat Politics and the Will to Innocence

Organization and Embodiment, discusses the portrayal of plush women in Hellenistic and Greek art as it strived to depict the normal as the ideal and beautiful. It goes on to discuss past cultures and the influence of food to maintain body stature and appearance. I always wondered how being fat became the "dirty" word. It was very interesting to see how the scale could have easily been tipped the other way and thin could have been ruled as "dirty" and unfavourable were it not for the political and religious directioning. An important point would definitely be how fat people are pigeon holed into a few mind sets leaving many left out because they don't fall into the predefined categories.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Tihaitien on October 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
It wasn't what I was expecting. This book is better used for research and academics on the impact of obesity in society and how discrimination against obesity is created and perpetuated. It is not intended to make you feel good about yourself but possibly to make you mad and revolt :)
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15 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on May 6, 2004
Format: Paperback
Fat people are widely represented in popular culture as being revolting: as agents of disgust yet Kathleen LeBesco argues in Revolting Bodies?: The Struggle To Redefine Fat Identity that fatness is more than a health or aesthetic issue: it is also a political issue. Revolting Bodies? informatively and thoughtfully considers sites of struggle over the cultural meaning of fatness and will have a special appeal to college-level health students as well as the health and fitness community with respect to its analysis of how fat creates oppression and stereotypes.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By K. Bell on June 21, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As others have noted, this is not a light-hearted romp through fat town, but an academically-oriented discourse that seeks to spur readers into action and contemplation. Even though the book is short, it is very well written and worth the money. I appreciated how the author chose to look at fat through the construct of identity. Inspiring and empowering! Highly recommended!
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4 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Brian Moore on June 23, 2006
Format: Paperback
Some say this slender volume provides thin gruel for the overweight, but those nay-sayers can stuff it. There's plenty of food for thought here, and I for one will no longer regurgitate my stale notions of fat identity.
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