Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

  • List Price: $16.95
  • Save: $1.92 (11%)
FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books.
Only 9 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
Fasting Girls: The Histor... has been added to your Cart
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Good
Comment: very clean with a remainder mark
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Fasting Girls: The History of Anorexia Nervosa Paperback – October 10, 2000

4.9 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

See all 5 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Price
New from Used from
Library Binding
"Please retry"
$114.95
Paperback
"Please retry"
$15.03
$3.68 $0.01

After the Speech: When Teens Get Real
It's not just about dreams; it's about life. Inspiring stories from transparent hearts. Learn More
$15.03 FREE Shipping on orders with at least $25 of books. Only 9 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Frequently Bought Together

  • Fasting Girls: The History of Anorexia Nervosa
  • +
  • Living in the Shadow of Death: Tuberculosis and the Social Experience of Illness in American History
  • +
  • Tinderbox: How the West Sparked the AIDS Epidemic and How the World Can Finally Overcome It
Total price: $55.13
Buy the selected items together


Editorial Reviews

Review

"Full of fascinating cases, from medieval saints and Victorian spiritualists to contemporary college students and media celebrities."--Alison Lurie

"Brilliant--. A masterful blend of history and contemporary issues."--Journal of Social History

From the Inside Flap

Winner of four major awards, this updated edition of Joan Jacobs Brumberg's Fasting Girls, presents a history of women's food-refusal dating back as far as the sixteenth century. Here is a tableau of female self-denial: medieval martyrs who used starvation to demonstrate religious devotion, "wonders of science" whose families capitalized on their ability to survive on flower petals and air, silent screen stars whose strict "slimming" regimens inspired a generation. Here, too, is a fascinating look at how the cultural ramifications of the Industrial Revolution produced a disorder that continues to render privileged young women helpless. Incisive, compassionate, illuminating, Fasting Girls offers real understanding to victims and their families, clinicians, and all women who are interested in the origins and future of this complex, modern and characteristically female disease.
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

The latest book club pick from Oprah
"The Underground Railroad" by Colson Whitehead is a magnificent novel chronicling a young slave's adventures as she makes a desperate bid for freedom in the antebellum South. See more

Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage; 9.10.2000 edition (October 10, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375724486
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375724480
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.8 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #237,088 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This book was totally absorbing. I didn't want to put it down. Who would have thought that such a terrible disease would have its origin in the Medievel church, as women starved themselves for their beliefs and to become (as they believed) holy. But, like most things under the sun, it's all been done before, so there really shouldn't be any surprise that self-starvation has a very long history.
I really enjoyed the histories of the individual "fasting girls." And Ms. Brumberg's description of the Victorian middle class was priceless and eye opening, considering how that era is so romantizied by a lot of us today.
The book revealed so much about how culture (present and past) shapes our opinions of ourselves, especially us women. Reading the book brought out my anger that society and culture expect women to have "perfect" bodies..."perfect" everything, and the pressure that is on us, both as teenagers and adults.
I recommend this book to anyone who would like to know more about anorexia nervosa and its history. There is a great deal of fascinating information. Just keep your dictionary handy to look up all the medical terms Brumberg quotes (and for some of her own words as well). My only disappointment in the book was that it ended too abruptly. Her book had me hooked, and then, finally, it had to end. I think there is a great deal more to be said about this disease, and I hope that she keeps up with the history and maybe writes another volume. Kudos to you, Ms. Brumberg. Very well done.
Comment 23 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
I've become an avid reader of medical history. When in medical school for my degree in neuroscience, my favorite class was one that dealt with the neurological basis of psychiatric disorders. The professor had MDs come in with a patient with a particular problem (Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, anorexia) and we would have the opportunity to listen to them tell their own story and their frustrations with their illness.
When they brought in a girl who was probably 5'8" and weight 78 pounds, it was fascinating to see the guys in the class who were normally very vocal and aggressive, totally shut up! From behind she looked like someone from a Nazi concentration camp, yet she continued to consider herself 'fat'. When she left, the MD had the nerve to turn around and tell the boys, that basically...anorexia was the fault of men. All of us were stunned. He put up an obviously much used power point slide showing the weights of women in both Playboy magazines and in the Miss USA pageant from the beginning to that year (1997). The line was steep and steady from the upper left-hand corner of the slide to the bottom right corner of the slide. This was the change in weight of the women who were participating in these 'endeavors' that the MD said were run by men (it was a male MD). Then he went further and said...most women's magazines are still mainly male bastions, as is the fashion industry both here and in Europe. The men in the class were absolutely horrified (and the women were thrilled that someone had the nerve to say this to them!)
This outstanding book is a must read for anyone going into psychology, neuroscience, working with adolescents, education, public health, etc. I've read few books with such deep understanding as to the history and ramifications of social mores on young women and girls.
Read more ›
5 Comments 46 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
An extremely well researched and well written book, it examines the history of Anorexia Nervosa. During medieval period, a woman's fasting was seen as evidence of her deep faith. This perception, which continued to the Victorian era, placed tremendous pressure on women to be abstemious. Many women died of self starvation throughout centuries. A byproduct of this view was forced fasting by the families of some women who received special attention and financial consideration from society due to the fact that a woman in their family was pious enough not to eat. Containing excellent illustrations, including that of a woman who died when her weight dropped to 49 pounds, this book helps the reader in comprehending the enormity of Anorexia Nervosa. It is a must reading for anyone who wishes to know more about a disorder that until recently was mistaken for virtue.
Comment 9 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
This is a fascinating survey of anorexia nervosa, and must reading for anyone interested in the history and "whys" of voluntary food refusal. It's not self-help or pop psychology, but rather, scholarship. Using obscure and fascinating source materials, case histories,and numerous contemporary accounts, Brumberg (one author, despite Amazon's mistaken listing) presents the reader with the history of anorexia nervosa: its roots in changing but always powerful popular notions of female attractiveness; religion; psychology; social relations, and class.
Comment 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I read this book for research purposes and found much to support and augment my research. Beyond that however, this was such a compelling read! I love history, especially the 19th and 20th centuries, and found her assessment of women and their bodies through that time fascinating. Anorexia is present in my family so there is a personal connection as well. This is not a clinical medical book but a really interesting study of a disease, how knowledge of it has evolved and how it is influenced by certain times in history plus the influence of society. If you are interested in the history of anorexia or, on a broader scope, a unique history of women, I highly recommend this book.
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

Set up an Amazon Giveaway

Fasting Girls: The History of Anorexia Nervosa
Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers. Learn more about Amazon Giveaway
This item: Fasting Girls: The History of Anorexia Nervosa