Fat - A Fate Worse Than Death?: Women, Weight and Appearance / Edition 1

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Despite the gains of the women’s movement, women are still judged by what they look like—and men, by what they do. Fat—A Fate Worse Than Death? offers hardy resistance to the narrow, random, and irrational appearance standards set for American women through an approach that is personal, eclectic, courageous, and funny. If you are interested in giving up your diet, throwing out your scales, and concentrating on who you are on a deeper level, this book will show you how to accept, appreciate, and even love your body!

Using statistics, research, anecdotes, and personal experiences, Fat—A Fate Worse Than Death? explores how appearance standards have built a prison for women. With the book’s helpful advice, reading suggestions, and list of more than 100 ways to fight looksism, sexism, ageism, and racism, you will learn to express your rights and needs, regardless of your shape or size, and tear down those prison walls. Designed to transcend the boundaries between the personal and the political, Fat—A Fate Worse Than Death? discusses:

  • examples of how weight and size constitute the last socially accepted prejudice
  • the national “War on Fat”
  • counteracting societal influences that support weight preoccupation
  • connection between appearance standards for older women and large women
  • nurturing your body
  • resisting male-defined standards of beauty for women
  • the myth of diets and dieting
  • how the body resists weight loss
  • how women are disempowered by concentration on weight and appearance
  • how concentrating on appearance leaves real-life issues unaddressed
  • how feeling bad about yourself can turn you into a willing consumer

    Feminists, faculty and students of women’s studies programs, aging women, women of radical politics, and other concerned women and men will find that Fat—A Fate Worse Than Death? states explicitly how women are kept powerless by subscribing to cultural and social edicts on physical appearance. Don’t live silently in a society that degrades and discounts women because of their physical stature and don‘t let obsession with thinness keep you passive, docile, and unable to give your energy to things that really need your passion and intelligence. Read this book and learn to not only value yourself for who you are, but also to counteract American culture’s equality-denying prejudices and practices.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Thone, a self-described "fat and old," white-haired, 65-year-old feminist, rails against a society that values youth and slenderness above all else, sparing no one from her radical language. Her palpable outrage certainly strikes a chord"We surround ourselves with images of starving women, bottom ribs removed, anorexic, bulimic, skeleton-like, reminiscent of extreme starvation, protruding pelvic bones, gaunt, gorgeous we think"but it can sound rather extreme, especially when Thone deems Naomi Wolf's work "foolish and retrogressive in spirit and fact," or when she repeatedly calls on doctors to cease linking ill health with obesity and to stop weighing their patients. Her haphazard, stream-of-consciousness style lacks organization; her tendency to lapse into lengthy lists of favorite feminist works further detracts. The alienation intensifies as Thone whines about her rarefied political social circle that parties at the White House, complains about her visit to a French masseuse, and advocates taking "time to be naked in front of a mirror." By the time she announces that all this anger has been for naught"I know I am making a scapegoat of being old and heavy to avoid insecurities that I have carried for a lifetime. That is one of the truths that can make me free, once I emotionally get hold of it, and face the insecurities, and not rail about our appearance-obsessed culture"she has already lost her readers. (Aug.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781560239086
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 8/28/1997
  • Series: Haworth Innovations in Feminist Studies
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 228
  • Product dimensions: 5.99 (w) x 8.34 (h) x 0.59 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface: The Beginning of a Journey

  • Section I. My Own Truths
  • Welcome to the World Beyond Size 10
  • Doubt: Whistling in the Dark
  • For You, Jane, Too Late?
  • Who Do I See in Another’s Eyes?
  • Tucking in My Blouse
  • Leafletting: Good Work Out There
  • I See My Insides/You See My Outsides
  • There’s Good Work Out There: What Others Are Saying
  • I See My Insides/You See My Outsides
  • The Lifelong Diet
  • What’s Funny About Fat?
  • Does “Old and Fat” Mean I’ve Given Up?
  • This Body I Live In
  • Section II. What the Outside World Believes
  • I Am Not Your Punching Bag!
  • Is Ugly True?
  • Screaming in the Face of the World, or What Does Acceptance Look Like?
  • Help! The Avalanche Roars Down on Us
  • The Birds
  • Why Do I Feel Like a Bull’s Eye?
  • Weight Watchers: How They Want Us Back!
  • Don’t Raise Your Head—They’re Still Shooting!
  • Section III. Time to Move On
  • Love Letters
  • Raw Courage in Face of Horror Stories
  • Breaking Free
  • Trudging Through
  • Fighting Back
  • Images of Ourselves—Good and Awful
  • Steps to Freedom
  • Epilogue: 100-Plus Ways to Fight Ageism, Looksism, Sexism, Racism, Fatism
  • Index
  • Reference Notes Included
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